The Visa Information System (VIS) is the EU’s information system dedicated to the exchange of data on persons applying for short-stay visas to enter the Schengen area. The primary role of the VIS is to support the implementation of the common EU visa policy. However, because it gathers a large amount of data on persons entering the Schengen area, the VIS also plays a role in supporting asylum procedures, combating irregular migration and preventing threats to EU internal security. The VIS began operations in October 2011 and its worldwide roll-out was completed in December 2015. As of October 2014, the verification of visa holders based on fingerprints (where available) became mandatory at the Schengen borders. The 22 EU Schengen states and the 4 associated Schengen states are connected to the VIS
Applications for Schengen visa (in millions)
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