Privacy Advisor

Global Privacy Dispatches- Czech Republic- Biometric Data

September 1, 2008

By Barbora Lezatkova

Biometric Data in the Czech Republic

On the basis of Council Regulation (EC) No. 2252/2004, the Czech Parliament approved and implemented the amendment to Act no. 329/1999 to allow for the use of biometric data (digital photographs and fingerprints) in travel documents.

Passports with machine-readable information and a computer chip containing biometric data (digital photograph only) have been issued in the Czech Republic since 1 September 2006. Fingerprints originally should have been introduced to passports and travel documents on 1 May 2008. The Czech government decided to postpone this term by a year due to the fact that the technical specifications for improved security mechanisms have not yet been approved by the EU. Consequently, fingerprints should be used in passports and travel documents issued in the Czech Republic as of 1 April 2009.

The implementation of biometric data in passports and visa applications should cost around 177 million Czech crowns (approximately EUR 7 million) between 2008 and 2011.

Barbora LeÃatková is an Advokátka at Linklaters, v.o.s., advokátní kanceláï, based in Prague. She may be reached at barbora.lezatkova@linklaters.com or at (420) 221 622 111.