Do you look like yourself in your passport photo? 

My New Passport

My New Passport (Photo credit: Tom Raftery)

A study by researchers at Glasgow University has shown that people are unrecognisable in their passport photos because they are not allowed to smile.  Biometric passports, which were introduced in 2006, require a serious expression: no grinning or smiling is allowed.  They use information about the face to identify people, such as the distance between the eyes and the position of the nose and mouth.  However, it has been shown that this serious expression makes it extremely difficult for a stranger to recognize a face.  The study concludes that checking passport photos may not be the best way to spot imposters at border controls.

Listen below

Read by Annette

Study the words

Unrecognisable –  impossible to identify

Allowed – permitted

Grinning – smiling with your teeth showing

Checking –  inspecting

Spot– see, notice

Imposters – people with false passports

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Do the takeaway test: passport photos