Kenya: NGO files case against IDEMIA for failure to consider human rights risks

Published: 1/Août/2022
Source: The Star (Nairobi)


Data Rights and their Kenyan partner organisations the Kenya Human Rights Commission and the Nubian Rights Forum (NRF) are suing IDEMIA, one of the leading biometric tech companies in the world, before the Paris judicial tribunal.

The case alleges that IDEMIA failed to adequately address human rights issues in its vigilance plan.

The claimants specify that the company did not undertake human rights due diligence in the course of its 2018/2019 contract with the Kenyan government to furnish technology to capture the population’s biometric data for the development of a national digital ID system in Kenya, the so-called National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS) or Huduma Namba.

The claimants argue that NIIMS runs the risk of excluding already marginalized communities who struggle to register.

At the same time, the centralized storage of data without proper checks and balances carries the risk of being exploited for new purposes, including surveillance.

Despite these apparent risks to human rights, IDEMIA sold the enabling technology to Kenya without conducting proper due diligence as required under the French Due Vigilance Law.

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Themes: Cartes d’identité et passeports
Regions: Kenya
Year: 2022