The Federal Bureau of Investigation is planning the world's largest databank of biometric information allowing it access to the physical characteristics of thousands of people, the Washington Post reported Saturday.
The 1-billion-dollar project of the FBI will give the federal police unprecedented access to information about people in the US and abroad in a massive computer database located in Clarksburg, West Virginia. Photos and fingerprints are already being analysed at the site, which may grow to include eye scans, even data on the shape of a person's face or how they walk and talk, the newspaper reported.
The data includes information from law enforcement officers across the country, but also data of 1.5 million Iraqi and Afghan prisoners, as well as civilians that have access to US military bases in those countries.
Proponents say it will make identifying criminals easier by comparing them quickly with information in the database, but human rights advocates see it as a step toward greater government intrusion.