USCIS Implements Customer Identity Verification at Field Offices

September 9, 2013

Beginning September 9, 2013, USCIS will employ a new verification tool called Customer Identity Verification (CIV) in its field offices. Applicants will now submit biometric data, specifically fingerprints and photographs, when appearing at USCIS offices for interviews or
to receive evidence of an immigration benefit.   Note: applicants will continue to also be required to have biometrics captured at an Application Support Center following the filing of their application (e.g. N-400, I-485, I-131 re-entry permit, etc.).

The USCIS reports that CIV will enhance the integrity of the immigration system and combat identity fraud by allowing USCIS to biometrically verify an applicant’s identity. Having resolved a technical issue that delayed its original launch, the tool will now be phased in between September 9 and October 21, 2013 to customers attending an interview or being issued evidence of an immigration benefit.

How it will work:   At the local USCIS office, the USCIS will electronically scan two fingerprints and take a picture to verify an applicant’s identity. The process takes just a few minutes and applies only to applicants who have an interview or are requesting evidence of an immigration benefit. People who come to a USCIS office for InfoPass appointments or to accompany an applicant will not undergo this process.  Upon verification of identity, the applicant can proceed to their interview or receive their document.

CIV connects instantly to the United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology’s (US-VISIT’s) Secondary Inspections Tool (SIT). SIT is a Web-based application that processes, displays and retrieves biometric and biographic data. US-VISIT also links databases associated with border inspections and security.

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