ePassports EAC Conformity & Interoperability Tests
Prague, September 7th - 12th 2008

Building infrastructure for governance over future challenges of border control processes using electronic travel documents

Implementation of second biometric identifier in e-passport, EAC security environment , Integrated border management concept need to be merged in the integrated IT System who has to fit in a feasible legal and technology framework. As these concepts are new and there is a poor implementation experience , there are lot of challenges and concerns and this task is hard for Republic of Macedonia as a small EU candidate country.

The presentation take closer look to all these challenges and also to our strategic plans how Republic of Macedonia is going to approach this task.

Security issues are common to all national governments and all implemented solutions for border checking processes need to be designed as interoperable and to define and support responsibility schema ( national and international). They should implement clear governance over the process. Border management process is crucial in the anti – terrorism struggle and also in the context of business and trade facilitation.

Implementation of secure IT infrastructure for enabling the process should build trust and confidence in the country capacity for establishing compliant framework for future EU association. From national perspective, Project has to be rational way for rapid implementation of international information security standards and improvement of governance processes in the people migration domain.

Republic of Macedonia has already issued 250,000 biometric travel documents, in accordance with ICAO and the EC standards. In April 2007, electronic travel documents were introduced, with two types of biometric data: first biometric data, photo of the travel document holder, that is personalized and protected with basic protection mechanism (BAC); and second biometric data, two fingerprints (from the right and left hand) of the passport holder, that are enrolled and stored in a database, however personalization in the travel document will be introduced upon establishment of an appropriate security infrastructure in order to provide advanced protective mechanism (EAC). This activity is planned to be completed by the end of 2008 or at latest by June 2009, when the deadline for implementation of the second biometric data in the electronic travel documents of the EU member states expires.

Planning and establishing EAC infrastructure has to foreseen future implementation of e-passport border checking procedure via certified readers. Legacy applications for border checking procedure has to be assessed and probably redesigned to obtain adequate implementation platform for implementation of EAC security concept as well as for Integrated Border Management concept.

There is also a challenge of immature technology providing EAC implementation in the wide range. Is there enough competitive companies that can provide certified equipment ?

Personal data protection, Biometric data privacy concerns, Integration of Information Systems on national and international level and all responsibility and consequences that nations in future has to share, is huge challenge for democratic society and needs some highlights which small nations need from International agencies and bodies. The whole System architecture has to be reassessed and verified from lot of interested stake-holders ( INTERPOL, EUROPOL, ICAO,ISO etc).