Press release

Publication of the Biometrics Commissioner’s second annual report

The report provides details of the activities of the Biometrics Commissioner since his appointment.


The 2015 report of the Commissioner for the Retention and Use for Biometric Material (Biometrics Commissioner) was submitted to the Home Secretary on 18 December 2015 and published on 11 March 2016.

The role of the Biometrics Commissioner was established by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (PoFA) and Alastair MacGregor was appointed as the first commissioner on 4 March 2013. His role is to provide independent oversight of the regime (which came into force on 31 October 2013), and to govern the retention and use of DNA samples, DNA profiles and fingerprints by the police in England and Wales.

In addition to various casework responsibilities in relation to DNA and fingerprints, he also has UK-wide oversight into their retention and use by the police on national security grounds.

Although this 2015 report deals primarily with developments since the publication of the Commissioner’s 2014 report, it provides information about all of his activities since his appointment. It covers his casework activities, the general operation of the PoFA regime and a variety of issues that have arisen in connection with its operation in both the normal policing and national security spheres.

Any queries in relation to this press release should be made to Justin Hawkins on 07792 551301.

Published 11 March 2016