As of September 9, 2013, the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) has implemented the Customer Identity Verification (CIV) system in its field offices, which will enable local USCIS offices to take the fingerprints and photographs of customers. Implementation of the CIV was previously attempted, but due to a technical issue the launch date had to be delayed until last week. The system will be phased in from now until October 21, 2013 in all USCIS offices.
The CIV was implemented to help combat identity fraud, and will allow USCIS to use the biometric data provided to verify the applicant’s identity immediately. When a customer arrives at a USCIS office, USCIS will take electronic scans of the customer’s fingerprints and a photograph. The data is then matched up with the United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology’s (US-VISIT’s) Secondary Inspections Tool (SIT), a web-based application that processes, displays and retrieves biometric and biographic data, as well as with other border and security databases. Once the customer’s identity is verified, he/she will be able to proceed to the interview or receive his/her immigration document.
All customers appearing for interviews or to receive evidence of an immigration benefit will be required to provide biometric data. Customers appearing for InfoPass appointments or anyone who is only accompanying a USCIS customer will not be required to provide biometrics.