About Pippa King
Pippa King is a parent whose children were nearly fingerprinted in 2005 when they were 6 and 7 years old for a school library system. After asking the Head Teacher when the school was going to obtain consent from parents she was told that the school did not need to ask her permission to take her children’s fingerprints. The UK Data Protection Act 1998 does not consider biometric data as Sensitive Personal Data and in order for schools to store and process a child’s Sensitive Data, parental consent must be sought. As biometric data is not considered to be ‘sensitive’, schools could take a child’s biometrics without informing parents.
She campaigned from 2005 along with other parents, and privacy/civil liberties organisations, for parents to have openness and transparency from schools with an option to ‘opt in’ and schools not to presume parental consent by (sometimes) offering an ‘opt out’.
The Protection of Freedoms Act was passed in May 2012 which requires, in chapter 2 clauses 26-28, for schools to gain written parental consent if they wish to store/process a child’s biometric data as of 1st September 2013.