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Border Force wants new tech to catch illegal immigrants



Authority looks for technology that can search deep into lorries at French and Belgian ports

The UK Border Force is aiming to upgrade the technology it uses for scanning lorries at ports in search of illegal immigrants.

It has indicated that it is beginning to look for a next generation solution for fast screening, with the ability to scan 200-250 vehicles per hour and detect people hidden deep within trailer loads.

This will represent an advance on the Passive millimetre-wave imaging (PMMWI) tech that the authority currently uses. It has five systems in use in northern French and Belgian ports - two at Calais, two at Coquelles and one at Zeebrugge – and is aiming to increase the number to take in Dunkirk and Ostend.

The prior information notice for a procurement says the system should use a technology that is compliant with French ionising radiation regulations, and include automatic number plate recognition, a remote diagnostic capability, remote software updates and the option to deploy some units on a mobile basis.

It also points to a need for threat assessment software that uses machine learning, and data storage arrangements.

The early indication on the value of the investment is around £20 million.

Picture adapted from image by the Home Office, uploaded by Opihuck,Open Government Licence v3.0 via Wikimedia Commons


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