Huge passport scam with 45 million victims

On Tuesday civic activists staged a protest outside the President’s Administration calling on him to veto the Law on a Unified State Demographic Register. They see the law as leading to a massive corruption setup which each Ukrainian citizen will have to fork out the money to finance. There will be huge queues, bureaucracy and also the risk that personal data will be used for purposes other than those for which it was gathered.

Using the EU requirement that Ukrainians have biometric passport (part of the EU-Ukraine Visa Liberalization Action Plan) as their excuse, officials will get a database about each citizen which will also have a sample signature, fingerprints etc. There are no convincing measures to ensure that the documents will not be for sale on the black market

The organizers of Tuesday’s protest are concerned that Ukrainians don’t understand the danger inherent in the draft bill on a demographic register. The number of documents which require biometric data will be large and the cost steep. Experts estimate that 60 million UAH will be spent on internal passports (identity papers) alone.


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