Monday July 25, 2011

What is it?

Biometrics are measurable physical and behavioral characteristics used to establish or verify personal identity. Biometrics enable security missions including high-value target tracking, maritime interdiction operations, personnel recovery, physical and logical access control, disaster relief, humanitarian assistance, security operations, access to services for non-U.S. persons, border protection and more.

What has the Army done?

Since 2000, the Secretary of the Army has served as the Executive Agent for Department of Defense (DoD) Biometrics. In 2006, the Secretary established the Biometrics Task Force (BTF) to serve as the focal point for DoD activities to program, integrate and synchronize biometric technologies and capabilities. In 2010, the BTF was re-designated the Biometrics Identity Management Agency (BIMA).

The Army and the entire DoD employ biometrics 24/7 to support myriad operational and institutional missions by:
Identifying the Individual. By successfully collecting, storing, matching and sharing biometric data, an individual’s identity (i.e. who he or she is) can be either established or verified against who he or she claims to be. Biometrics strips away anonymity and enables operators to take action and mitigate tactical, operational or strategic threats.
Enabling the Mission. The DoD Biometrics Enterprise works with joint, interagency, intergovernmental and multinational (JIIM) partners to integrate biometrics capabilities as needed to support military operations and business functions. It is a flexible, global enterprise that protects rights and enables services for DoD personnel and their JIIM partners, while denying anonymity to adversaries.
Protecting Information/Identities/People. In support of the National Security Strategy, biometrics capabilities protect personnel and installations world-wide. The DoD ensures that biometric data and other associated identifiable information are protected.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned?

By facilitating long-term investment and consistently enhancing biometrics functionality, the Secretary of the Army fulfills his role as the DoD Executive Agent for biometrics to institutionalize the capability as a core competency of the DoD. BIMA, as the Executive Manager for biometrics, leads DoD activities to program, integrate and synchronize biometrics concepts, technologies and capabilities and operates the DoD authoritative biometrics database.

Why is this important to the Army?

Biometrics is a key to security efforts in the fight against terrorism. The ability to establish an individual’s identity with certitude and link the individual to past aliases or activities gives our military personnel a decisive edge and aids other U.S. government organizations.


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