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New IELTS Biometric Security Protocols




IELTS partners implement Biometric Security Measures

The IELTS test partners, British Council, IDP Australia and Cambridge English Language Assessment have introduced a new biometric security system globally, the system is used for verifying the identity of IELTS candidates on the day of the test, to prevent fraud or cheating.

IELTS finger scanning & HD photos

IELTS is a high-stakes test, and the security protocols introduced include finger scans (in jurisdictions which permit this) and high-resolution photography of a candidates face. The photograph taken on the IELTS test day is the same photograph which will appear on the candidates TRF (their IELTS Test Report Form).

The IELTS partners developed the biometric security measures following consultation with security specialists and these new security protocols are especially designed to meet the security needs of the IELTS test.

Various governments which accept IELTS test results, for immigration procedures, have received the news positively and welcomed the additional security measures. IELTS candidates have also expressed that they are happy with the new security measures, as the finger scan process actually saves time when entering the examination room on test day.

This is a proactive approach to maintaining the integrity and security of the IELTS testing process and allows staff to verify test takers photographs through a dedicated website.

The new IELTS security measures take into account the need to comply with the requirements of each local jurisdiction and respective privacy laws. The IELTS test is now administered in over 900 locations in 130 countries around the world.

New IELTS security measure maintain integrity of test

These new security protocols by the British Council and IDP IELTS will help maintain the integrity of IELTS as a leading global language test.

As well as the newly implemented hi-tech security IELTS also operates several other well-established security protocols to counter against possible identity fraud among IELTS candidates on the test day.

Non-classified security measures include:
  • candidates must present photographic evidence of their identity
  • only a passport or government issued ID card are accepted as identity documents
  • verification of each IELTS candidate’s signature
  • during the test period there are various identity checks carried out
  • the IELTS Speaking test has a separate identity check
  • IELTS candidates must place their identification document on the desk during the duration of the test
  • staff who work at IELTS test centers receive special training related to detecting imposters and recognizing fraudulent documentation.

More than 8,000 institutions, including governments, educational and professional bodies use IELTS test results as part of immigration or admission requirements. IELTS results are also trusted by many international companies, as employers, worldwide as a source of accurate and reliable evaluation of English language competency by test takers. Some of the organizations include:
  • UK Border Agency (UKBA)
  • International Monetary Fund
  • New Zealand Immigration Service
  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada
  • General Medical Council (GMC) – UK
  • Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA)
  • National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) – USA
  • Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC)


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