Today the situation has finally been saved: the storage of fingerprints under the new Dutch Passport Act has been done away with! Both the development of a national database as well as the current storage by municipalities are being stopped. The fingerprints of 4.5 million innocent citizens that have already been stored will now have to be destroyed. Moreover, the legal status of the national ID card will have to be modified in such a way that fingerprints will no longer have to be a part of this document. This will create an ID document for use within national borders that is without biometrics which means that a long-cherished wish of those principally aggrieved is being fulfilled. Last week Privacy First made all these demands in a letter to the House of Representatives and is delighted that all demands will now be met.
From the moment the new Passport Act came into force in the Summer of 2009, Privacy First has been opposing against it by whatever means were available. Today is an historic day: this day proves that social resistance pays off. Partly because of the pressure of our civil lawsuit together with 21 co-plaintiffs the new Passport Act has today effectively succumbed. We already predicted it months ago: one way or another (politically or judicially) we were going to win this case. Privacy First is determined to continue this development and to turn the Netherlands into a society that Dutch citizens deserve: a society in which faith and freedom are basic values once more and in which everyone’s right to privacy is being respected. To that end this victory over the new Passport Act is a crucial first step.