The Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS), implemented by the South African Police Services (SAPS), is now mandatory practice within the process of clearance checks for criminal records.
Service providers within the credentials verification and identity security industry have pooled their expertise to help businesses get to grips with this process and the change in system.
In 2008 the SAPS made the decision to discontinue the use of a name and ID clearance checks for criminal records and implement AFIS. The reason, as agreed by both authorities and industry experts, is that names and personal identification numbers are prone to abuse, manipulation and falsification.
In order for companies to be able to initiate these checks and capture fingerprints electronically, they have to be registered / enrolled with AFIS. This enrolment process requires certification and this, in turn, requires training.
Managed Integrity Evaluation (MIE) and Ideco are partners in an ongoing project to provide customers with access to the system and the required training.
Ina van der Merwe, CEO of MIE, says the company is fully geared for AFIS and has been for some years.
MIE uses Sagem Morpho MSO 300 fingerprint scanners, acquired through Ideco, to provide the necessary training on, and access to AFISwitch.
“Since June of this year AFIS is the only legal avenue to test the criminal record of a person. To this end we have now established a state-of-the-art, fully equipped training facility to train clients. We have already trained over two thousand people on the system,” says Van der Merwe.
MIE’s SmartScreen solution has been in production for more than two years. The first version of AFISwitch for Windows 7 was released at the end of May 2011. The company’s fingerprint hosting solution is already active and in wide use.
Marius Coetzee, COO of Ideco, says that incidents of fraud and manipulation of data is on the increase and continues to have a profound impact on commerce. The decision to amend the system officially used in the clearance check process is one he believes had to be made and will lead to more accurate checks.
“We are pleased that there is appreciation for the role that fingerprint biometric technology continues to play in streamlining and improving security and credentials verification. The new system is widely considered to be more accurate, with no room for human error or abuse. Using market leading scanners from Ideco will provide peace of mind and value to clients,” he adds.