The Office of Biometric Identity Management (OBIM) provides biometric match, store, share, and analyze services to DHS and mission partners. The need for biometrics continues to grow among DHS Components; interagency stakeholders (e.g., the Departments of State, Justice, and Defense); state, local, tribal and territorial entities; the Intelligence Community; and international mission partners. Biometrics support critical national security priorities, including counterterrorism and immigration. OBIM is focused on delivering accurate, timely, and high assurance biometric identity information and analysis. OBIM’s overall goals and priorities include continuing to improve biometric services and access to expanded biometric data to enable DHS operational missions.


OBIM’s services include: fingerprint, face recognition, and iris modalities (both one-to-one and one-to-many); automated match-store-share capabilities; human biometric examiners; and notification services that alert subscribers to encounters, changes in derogatory information, or other activities on individual identities.


The Automated Biometric Identity System (IDENT) is the primary DHS biometric repository, and the largest biometric repository in the U.S. Government. IDENT enables DHS operators and mission partners to more effectively and readily benefit from one another’s biometric data, and is efficient for DHS, avoiding the need for duplicate systems.

Subject Matter Experts

OBIM’s subject matter experts support DHS Components and mission partners in daily operations, developing and fielding new capabilities, and providing thought leadership on future biometric technologies.


As a steward, OBIM does not own the biometric data that DHS Components and mission partners collect. OBIM’s role is to manage and protect this data on behalf of its partners in accordance with legal, policy, and privacy requirements. Under OBIM’s robust approach to cybersecurity and privacy, each data provider is able to restrict the maintenance, retention, and sharing of its data with other organizations. OBIM provides a conduit to interagency, international, state, and local mission partners. OBIM is the fingerprint provider for the Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs. OBIM provides support and biometric guidance, serving as the Secretariat for the Biometric Capabilities Executive Stakeholder Committee led by the Deputy Under Secretary for Management and leading biometric standards work. OBIM is also developing guidance on biometric capture quality, and guidance for DHS Components to collect three modalities — fingerprint, face, and iris — at first encounter, for improved identity assurance.

OBIM is developing IDENT’s replacement biometric system – Homeland Advanced Recognition Technology (HART). HART will provide DHS and its mission partners the next generation of flexible, scalable, and efficient biometric repository technology. The new system will furnish timely, accurate, and highly assured biometric identity services that support mission partners in identifying people encountered and assessing whether they pose a risk to the United States.

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Categories: Biometrics, Identity
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