Fingerprints in ID cards valid as travel documents
The national legislative amendment complementing the EU Regulation on identity cards enters into force on 2 August 2021. A core change resulting from the amendment is that as of 2 August 2021, the ID cards that can be used as travel documents will include fingerprints in the same manner as passports do while the card design will also undergo updates to include all the uniform visual elements required of the EU ID cards in line with the Regulation.
All Finnish citizens over 12 years of age will be required to have their fingerprints taken when applying for the normal Finnish ID card. ID applications already pending at the time of entry into force of the Act must be complemented with the fingerprints. The fingerprints taken will be stored in the ID card chip and the ID card register.
Under the EU Regulation, the fingerprint requirement is related to the right to travel, and therefore they are not taken from individuals applying for an ID card issued to minors without parental consent or foreigner’s ID cards, or for temporary regular or foreigner’s ID cards as these cards do not qualify as travel documents.
As regards the taking of fingerprints, the regulation and process are virtually the same as in case of passports. For this reason, the processes to issue passports and ID cards through a lighter process, i.e., without a personal visit to a Police station, were harmonised. In the future, both the passport and the ID card can be issued without a personal visit to the Police station if the person applying for the document has, during the past six years before the application, been personally identified in a passport or ID card issuance process, with their fingerprints taken and other requirements satisfied.
Due to the new obligations resulting from the EU Regulation, the ID card design needed to be changed. The design of the new ID cards introduced as of 2 August 2021 is shown in the image. More detailed information on the model ID cards both currently in use and to be issued as of 2 August 2021 will be posted at www.poliisi.fi.
The changes do not affect the validity or use of ID cards issued prior to 2 August 2021.