updated 12/31/2010 9:16:37 AM ET 2010-12-31T14:16:37

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 31, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ImageWare Systems, Inc. (Pink Sheets:IWSY), a pioneer and leader in providing identity management solutions worldwide, has been selected to expand a previously announced biometric border management project with an undisclosed foreign country. The contract award, valued at a maximum of $37 million, if all options are exercised, will have ImageWare continue the implementation of its biometrically enhanced border management solution which will create and manage biometrically enabled visa holders in specific visa categories issued to the country's visitors. The project will start in January and is expected to conclude in mid 2012.

"This is the long planned continuation and expansion to the border control project announced in October, 2009," said ImageWare Chairman and CEO Jim Miller. "As a result of a successful implementation, the host government requested ImageWare to combine the remainder of Phase 1 work with a significant expansion in Phase 2. IWS billed and was paid approximately $2.5 million for its initial work on the project. The result is a significant contract opportunity for the deployment of the IWS Border Management solution as the foundation of the country's visa process. Once this foundation is in place, the host government will be able to implement its plans to expand the solution in other venues across the country and broaden the business process that requires the support of ImageWare's  identity management solution."

ImageWare's border management software will enable its government customer to biometrically enroll applicants seeking permission to cross its border. Once an applicant's finger, face and iris are enrolled along with applicable text information, a smart card will be issued to the applicant, which will be used thereafter to verify the authenticity of the applicant's identity and privileges. The card will be compliant with the biometric standards set by ICAO, the international organization that sets the standards for passports and travel documents. The project will incorporate ImageWare's patented technology for biometric/identity enrollment, identity vetting, credential issuance, credential management and access control. The open architected platform enables users to create an application that is capable of utilizing virtually any biometric and a myriad of biometric capture devices. Both biometric algorithms and hardware devices can be interchanged at the customers' discretion.

About ImageWare Systems, Inc.

ImageWare Systems, Inc. is a leading developer of identity management solutions, providing biometric, secure credential and law enforcement technologies. Scalable for worldwide deployment, the Company's biometric product line includes a multi-biometric engine that is hardware and algorithm independent, enabling the enrollment and management of unlimited population sizes. ImageWare's identification products are used to manage and issue secure credentials including national IDs, passports, driver licenses, smart cards and access control credentials. ImageWare's digital booking products provide law enforcement with integrated mug shot, fingerprint Livescan and investigative capabilities. ImageWare is headquartered in San Diego, with offices in Portland, OR, Washington DC and Canada. For more information visit www.iwsinc.com .

Safe Harbor Statement

This news release may contain forward-looking statements made pursuant to the "safe harbor'' provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. While these statements are meant to convey to the public the company's progress, business opportunities and growth prospects, readers are cautioned that such forward-looking statements represent management's opinion. While management believes such representation to be true and accurate based on the information available to the company, actual results may differ materially from those described. The company's operations and business prospects are always subject to risks and uncertainties. Important facts that may cause actual results to differ are set forth in the company's periodic filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

CONTACT:  ImageWare Systems, Inc.
          Wayne Wetherell
          (858) 673-8600

© Copyright 2012, GlobeNewswire, Inc. All Rights Reserved


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