Marine Corps Fields praise ‘game changing’ biometric collection system
13 December 2017 18:33 GMT

A biometric data collection system being used by the Marine Corps Fields is having a huge benefit to their daily operations.

The new biometrics system to help deployed Marines identify and track the movement of individuals encountered on the battlefield, conduct entry control point operations, and determine who is a friend or foe, reports

Developed by biometrics firm Aware, the Identity Dominance System-Marine Corps, or IDS-MC can perform biometric data collection, matching, and transaction management.

The system is composed of a handheld device, known as the Secure Electronic Enrollment Kit, and a laptop computer with specialized biometric collection sensors and a badge printer.

The website notes that the IDS-MC replaces the Biometric Enrollment and Screening Device to assist with detainee management and questioning, base access, counterintelligence screening, border control and law enforcement operations.

However, unlike the BESD, IDS-MC’s transactional data management capability conveniently collects, shares, matches and stores identity information immediately, allowing the user to connect to the Tactical Data Network, manage and submit collected data and receive responses and feedback on submissions.

This improves on a previous system, which could take days to download data via a CD or DVD, and then Marines had to transmit that vital identity information from a separately connected computing system. This process was not only logistically cumbersome, but the latency in data submission and response receipt created force protection mission challenges for the Marine.

“The IDS-MC is more convenient because it connects directly to the Marine Corps’ Tactical Data Network, allowing Marines to share data and submit biometrics and receive the responses effortlessly,” said Sarah Swift, Identity Operations Team lead for Biometrics and Forensics Systems at MCSC, to  

To develop the IDS-MC, the Identity Operations Team identified a need for a portable, easy-to-use system via feedback from Marines in the fleet. The system was created to directly address the specific needs of Marine Expeditionary Forces in a contested environment.

Aware, a global provider of biometrics software and solutions, announced last June that it would be providing software and services to the United States Marine Corps in support of their identity operations. 

"Aware's work with the Marines demonstrates an ability to rapidly and cost-effectively modify our URC and BioSP applications to satisfy specific requirements, thanks largely to their modular design and basis in field-proven COTS products," commented Rob Mungovan, VP of Biometrics at Aware, at the time. "We believe our mobile solutions are the best available of their kind, vetted by a rigorous program-of-record procurement, and we plan to continue to build upon our deep expertise in this important field."