It has been confirmed that Guangdong province has implemented, as of March 2008, a barcode identification system for photos taken of foreigners for use in foreign expert certificate books (now the “blue book”) as well as residency permits. Although the photos themselves are not numbered, the photo used from that photo session is associated with a barcoded receipt that the foreign expert must sign and then submit along with the photos that will then be used by the PSB. We’ve attached a sample of the receipt here. You can click on the image to the left to view a full-sized copy of the original document.
We cannot confirm at this time if other provinces will follow suit, but we suspect that this system may soon be adopted by other international cities where the number of foreigners is formidable.