Questions Raises as Millions of Foreigners Enter US Without Proper Screenings

This article highlights concerns about the efficiency of the US Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) screening process for foreign nationals entering the country. Here’s a breakdown of the key points:

  • Millions Granted Visas Without Proper Screening: Over 7 million non-immigrant visas were issued between 2020 and 2024, potentially without required in-person interviews and biometric screening (fingerprinting).
  • Lack of Awareness and Data: Port officials may not have been aware of the fingerprint waiver program ending, and the exact number of individuals who bypassed biometric screening remains unknown.
  • DHS Screening Effectiveness: The DHS Inspector General found the department’s screening of visa applicants and asylum seekers to be inconsistent.
  • Information Sharing Issues: The State Department reportedly withheld information on visa holders who hadn’t undergone interviews or screening until March 2024.
  • Challenges for Border Officers: CBP officers at entry points manage a high volume of travelers and lack complete verification due to the absence of fingerprint data for some visa holders.
  • Potential for Informed Decisions: Consular interviews are seen as crucial for verifying identities and determining eligibility before entry. Without this information, CBP officers may struggle to make informed decisions.
  • Proposed Expansion of Waiver Program: Despite these concerns, DHS and the State Department planned to expand the number of visa categories exempt from consular interviews in December 2023.

Overall, the passage suggests potential vulnerabilities in the US screening process for foreign nationals. The lack of complete screening and information sharing raises concerns about national security.

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