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Biometrics and Forensics Ethics Group: Annual Report

Volume 675: debated on Tuesday 5 May 2020

My noble Friend the Minister of State, Home Office (Baroness Williams of Trafford) has today made the following written statement:

Today I am pleased to announce the publication of the second annual report of the Biometrics and Forensic Ethics Group. The group provides Ministers with independent advice on matters relating to data ethics and ethical issues in forensic science and biometrics.

I would like to thank the group for its strategic advice concerning the use and retention of biometric identifiers and for its advice on the development and testing of new biometric technologies.

The group has made four recommendations covering the testing and use of live facial recognition technologies by police forces; the design and implementation of data privacy impact assessments with the Home Office; and the use of familial DNA analysis results in assessing the value of genetic genealogy techniques for law enforcement.

In addition, the group continues to recommend a review of biometric retention and deletion schedules, particularly regarding custody images.

The Biometrics and Forensics Ethics Group annual report can be viewed on the website of the group at: https://www. and a copy will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.