Mexico could soon be collecting biometric data from the cellphones of its citizens in an effort to stem kidnapping and extortion attempts there.
The country’s Senate this week approved a registry that would store biometric data collected from mobile devices. The legislation, which had already passed Mexico’s lower house, calls for the Instituto Federal de Telecomunicaciones, the country’s telecom regulator, to collect consumer data including fingerprints and eye biometrics.
Privacy advocates around the globe have argued that governments will inevitably try to collect this data and, no matter how noble the initial cause, could use it for nefarious purposes. Merchants are increasingly using the biometric capabilities of mobile devices to authenticate online payments.