June 01, 2005

ID News

From the LA Times: Federal ID Act May Be Flawed; and an excellent piece at GovTech: Invasive ID. In case anyone's unclear as to how far this NID will reach, it's spelled out here (emphasis mine):
The broad set of rules, known as the Real ID Act, would require states to issue federally approved electronic identification cards, including drivers' licenses. Licenses and ID cards must include a digital photo and anti-counterfeiting features, such as undefined "machine-readable technology with defined minimum data elements." Radio frequency ID tags or magnetic strips are two examples of machine-readable technology the ID cards could feature.

In addition, states would be required to demand proof of the person's Social Security card and birth certificate before issuing a license. States would also be required to link their license databases if they wished to continue receiving federal funds.

Technically the legislation's requirements aren't mandatory, however, if states don't opt in and use them for issuing drivers' licenses, the licenses would be unacceptable at any federal service or site. Any American without approved identification would be denied access to all federally controlled sites, such as airplanes, trains, national parks, federal courthouses and other places.

Because the new standards aren't mandatory, the legislation doesn't create a national identification system, according to the bill's supporters.


Some good news on the NID front comes from Japan: Juki Net violates privacy rights of unwilling participants: court. According to the story, a right to privacy is granted by Japan's constitution. Juki Net, the government registry, had been putting people's information into it without their consent. Apparently the government was quite surprised to lose the case.

3 Comments:

Blogger Unstructuredreality said...

One of my favorite part of the legislation goes like this:
"The term `official purpose' includes but is not limited to accessing Federal facilities, boarding federally regulated commercial aircraft, entering nuclear power plants, and any other purposes that the Secretary shall determine."

That's- "includes but is not limited to" Whatever the "Secretary" demands

2:07 PM  
Anonymous Bill Statler said...

The quoted article says: "States would also be required to link their license databases if they wished to continue receiving federal funds."

This, actually, is out-of-date info. The funding link was true in H.R.418 - but in the final version (H.R.1268) that actually got signed into law, this was changed. Now, states must link their databases, otherwise none of their licenses will be acceptable as federal ID.

7:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So if I don't get their gov.id, the IRS won't expect to get a tax return from me? COOL!

1:07 PM  

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