PEOPLE who are arriving at UK airports are reportedly facing delays as electronic passport gates have stopped working, the Home Office has confirmed.

A Home Office spokesperson said: "We are aware of a nationwide border system issue affecting arrivals into the UK.

"We are working to resolve the issue as soon as possible and are liaising with port operators and airlines to minimise disruption for travellers."

What airports in the UK are affected by electronic passport gates not working?

At the time of writing, all airports across the country that use the gates are affected, reports the BBC.

It's thought the systems originally stopped working last night and this means passengers flying in are having to queue to get their passports checked manually.

Edinburgh Airport has said it is aware of the issue and that contingency measures are being put in place. 

They tweeted: "Arriving passengers should be aware of on ongoing issue with e-gates across UK airports.

"At Edinburgh we are working with UK Border Force colleagues to put contingencies in place while they work to rectify the issue. Thank you for your patience and understanding."

When asked when the issue is likely to be resolved, the account said it was a UK Border Force issue and that it would need to "defer to them". 

What are electronic passport gates at UK airports?

The electronic passport gates are automated self-service barriers operated by the UK Border Force and located at immigration checkpoints in arrival halls in some airports across the UK.

The purpose of the electronic system is to speed up passport controls.

The gates use facial recognition technology to verify the traveller's identity against the data stored in the chip in their passport.

Lucy Morton, from the Immigration Services Union, has spoken to BBC Radio 4, warning that queues would build "very, very quickly".

"You end up putting all the passengers through physically-manned officer desks.

"Staff can't take the breaks that they should be taking ... the whole thing will snowball very quickly."

She also said between 60-80% of travelling passengers are usually processed by the e-gates, but it depends on the airport.

However, Morton confirmed "there's no impact on national security," explaining that travellers will still be fully checked.

"But it will build queues,” she added.