About 50% of European border and visa officials interviewed by FRA spoke of data entry mistakes in their IT systems. This can result from spellings errors including mistakes when converting names to Latin alphabets, difficulties in interpretation, incomplete or incorrect data provided, confusion over first and last names, uncertainty over the exact date of birth or fingerprints being assigned to the wrong person.
National authorities and experts attach a high degree of credibility to biometric data. This makes it difficult to rebut errors in IT systems and prove that the biometric match is wrong.
In addition, as children age their fingerprint and face change, undermining the reliability when making comparisons with records taken many years earlier.
Mistakes can have serious consequences. For example, it can lead to arrests by the police or prevent legitimate border crossings. Asylum applicants may also be suspected of having intentionally tried to provide a false identity undermining the credibility of their asylum claim.