Foreign students must give fingerprints

Foreign students coming to Britain to study will have to provide the authorities with their fingerprints as part of a programme to clamp down on bogus students.

The system, which will come into place in March next year, aims to protect Britain’s labour market with tough new rules ensuring visas will only be granted to students with proven records in education.

Minister of state David Lammy welcomed the move, saying it “will help to ensure we have a structure that allows international students to benefit from the excellent educational experience the UK offers.

“The new system will toughen this process further and give extra protection from the damage bogus colleges can cause.”

Colleges and universities will be required to have a license issued by the UK Border Agency if they wish to teach non European Economic Area (EEA) students.

International students contribute £2.5 billion every year to the UK economy in tuition fees.

Since January 2005, around 300 bogus colleges have been removed from the Department for Universities and Skills register of education and training providers.