Comparitech specialists examined 50 countries for the usage and protection of personal data.
Experts were interested in where the biometric data is collected, why and how it is stored. Based on this, each country was given the corresponding number of points (maximum 25). The higher the score, the more extensive and more aggressive the collection of biometric data in a country is. Low scores, on the contrary, indicate great restrictions and controls in the collection of biometrics and governmental supervision.
China scored the most points (24), followed by Pakistan and Malaysia (21), the USA (20) and India, Indonesia, Philippines and Taiwan (19) close the top five. The top 5 countries with an A+, where biometric data is collected not so strictly and is better controlled, include Ireland (11), Portugal (11), Cyprus (12), Great Britain (12) and Romania (12). Canada, Argentina and Japan received 16 out of 25. Not too bad!
In each country studied by researchers, biometrics are used in banking (for example, fingerprints for authorization in banking applications or for identifying customers in banks). Many countries also collect biometric data from foreigners (through visas and airport checks). Although biometric data is recognized as extremely sensitive information, widespread use is permitted in many countries. Moreover, in most countries, surveillance cameras with face recognition are used or tested.
As the study showed, in Europe as a whole, the protection of biometric data is better than outside of it. According to experts, this is due to the “General Data Protection Regulation” (GDPR) in the European Union.
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