How to have a national ID card that doesn't threaten civil liberties

Discussion in 'Computer Security' started by Russell Mangum, Dec 31, 2003.

  1. From http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.01/start.html?tw=wn_tophead_6

    Identity Crisis


    How to have a national ID card that doesn't threaten civil liberties.

    By Jeffrey Rosen

    Debate about the concept of a national identification card has been
    polarized in the extreme. Techno-positivists argue that for a secure state,
    the government should have access to as much data as possible. Principled
    libertarians respond that government shouldn't have access to any data at
    all - that a badly designed system could keep tabs on citizens' travel,
    spending, and personal habits.

    But a privacy-friendly card is feasible if it follows one simple rule:
    verification, not identification. In other words, the card would confirm
    identity but wouldn't allow the government to pick you out of a crowd.
    There's a model: In 1995, Canadian entrepreneur George Tomko invented an
    innovative technology that made it possible to lock packets of data in
    encrypted files, using a fingerprint as a private key. After clearing a
    background check, the users of a Tomko-like card would receive a digitized
    packet of information that said, for example, they were cleared to cross a
    particular border. They'd download the parcel onto a card and lock it with a
    thumbprint.

    Using this card at a border checkpoint, they'd swipe it and then provide a
    thumbprint. If the print decrypted the file, the system would verify their
    identity. Because the fingerprints wouldn't be stored in a central database,
    individuals would retain complete control over how much personal information
    was revealed. To maximize privacy, the system would keep no identifiable
    records of who had passed through, and it would not be linked with any other
    databases that might allow predictions of future behavior.

    Technology alone won't prevent mission creep. After the card's deployment,
    Congress would have to prohibit the government from accessing private
    fingerprint databases or linking them with other information without cause.
    Such legislation is already in the pipeline: Russell Feingold (D-Wisconsin),
    the only senator to vote against the USA Patriot Act, is sponsoring a bill
    to restrict the use of predictive data mining. It revives a requirement that
    the Patriot Act eliminated, limiting the most invasive surveillance
    technologies to those who have been identified as unusually suspicious.

    None of those safeguards will guarantee market success. A private ID card
    like Brill's, sold principally as a way to avoid long lines, might not
    provoke Americans' mistrust of monitoring, but frequent fliers already avoid
    long lines at airports. Building and stadium owners have no compelling
    reason to invest in card readers if they don't help eliminate liability for
    letting in terrorists. And many offices already issue their own IDs.
     
    Russell Mangum, Dec 31, 2003
    #1
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  2. Russell Mangum

    Malev Guest

    On Wed, 31 Dec 2003 12:08:34 GMT, "Russell Mangum" <>
    wrote:

    >From http://www.------------------
    >Identity Crisis
    >
    >
    >How to have a national ID


    What's this shit doing in alt.privacy.spyware?
    Moron.
     
    Malev, Dec 31, 2003
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Russell Mangum

    Anonymous Guest

    On Wed, 31 Dec 2003, "Russell Mangum" <> wrote:
    >From http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.01/start.html?tw=wn_tophead_6
    >
    >Identity Crisis
    >
    >
    >How to have a national ID card that doesn't threaten civil liberties.
    >
    >By Jeffrey Rosen
    >
    >Debate about the concept of a national identification card has been
    >polarized in the extreme. Techno-positivists argue that for a secure state,
    >the government should have access to as much data as possible. Principled
    >libertarians respond that government shouldn't have access to any data at
    >all - that a badly designed system could keep tabs on citizens' travel,
    >spending, and personal habits.
    >
    >But a privacy-friendly card is feasible if it follows one simple rule:
    >verification, not identification. In other words, the card would confirm
    >identity but wouldn't allow the government to pick you out of a crowd.
    >There's a model: In 1995, Canadian entrepreneur George Tomko invented an
    >innovative technology that made it possible to lock packets of data in
    >encrypted files, using a fingerprint as a private key. After clearing a
    >background check, the users of a Tomko-like card would receive a digitized
    >packet of information that said, for example, they were cleared to cross a
    >particular border. They'd download the parcel onto a card and lock it with a
    >thumbprint.
    >
    >Using this card at a border checkpoint, they'd swipe it and then provide a
    >thumbprint. If the print decrypted the file, the system would verify their
    >identity. Because the fingerprints wouldn't be stored in a central database,
    >individuals would retain complete control over how much personal information
    >was revealed. To maximize privacy, the system would keep no identifiable
    >records of who had passed through, and it would not be linked with any other
    >databases that might allow predictions of future behavior.
    >
    >Technology alone won't prevent mission creep. After the card's deployment,
    >Congress would have to prohibit the government from accessing private
    >fingerprint databases or linking them with other information without cause.
    >Such legislation is already in the pipeline: Russell Feingold (D-Wisconsin),
    >the only senator to vote against the USA Patriot Act, is sponsoring a bill
    >to restrict the use of predictive data mining. It revives a requirement that
    >the Patriot Act eliminated, limiting the most invasive surveillance
    >technologies to those who have been identified as unusually suspicious.
    >
    >None of those safeguards will guarantee market success. A private ID card
    >like Brill's, sold principally as a way to avoid long lines, might not
    >provoke Americans' mistrust of monitoring, but frequent fliers already avoid
    >long lines at airports. Building and stadium owners have no compelling
    >reason to invest in card readers if they don't help eliminate liability for
    >letting in terrorists. And many offices already issue their own IDs.


    We already have one. It is called your social security number that the
    legislature never intended for that use. The whole idea has been
    misconstrued and scope ctreeped over the years. My original card had on it
    very plainly printed not to be used for identification purposes. Well, look
    how that has all changed!

    Never support any kind of whacko ideas such as the above writer's
    suggestions. It will only lead to a socialist state.



    -=-
    This message was posted via two or more anonymous remailing services.
     
    Anonymous, Jan 2, 2004
    #3
  4. Russell Mangum

    Bill Unruh Guest

    Anonymous <> writes:

    ]On Wed, 31 Dec 2003, "Russell Mangum" <> wrote:
    ]>From http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.01/start.html?tw=wn_tophead_6
    ]>
    ]>Identity Crisis
    ]>
    ]>
    ]>How to have a national ID card that doesn't threaten civil liberties.
    ]>
    ]>By Jeffrey Rosen
    ]>
    ]>Debate about the concept of a national identification card has been
    ]>polarized in the extreme. Techno-positivists argue that for a secure state,
    ]>the government should have access to as much data as possible. Principled
    ]>libertarians respond that government shouldn't have access to any data at
    ]>all - that a badly designed system could keep tabs on citizens' travel,
    ]>spending, and personal habits.
    ]>
    ]>But a privacy-friendly card is feasible if it follows one simple rule:
    ]>verification, not identification. In other words, the card would confirm
    ]>identity but wouldn't allow the government to pick you out of a crowd.
    ]>There's a model: In 1995, Canadian entrepreneur George Tomko invented an
    ]>innovative technology that made it possible to lock packets of data in
    ]>encrypted files, using a fingerprint as a private key. After clearing a
    ]>background check, the users of a Tomko-like card would receive a digitized
    ]>packet of information that said, for example, they were cleared to cross a
    ]>particular border. They'd download the parcel onto a card and lock it with a
    ]>thumbprint.
    ]>
    ]>Using this card at a border checkpoint, they'd swipe it and then provide a
    ]>thumbprint. If the print decrypted the file, the system would verify their
    ]>identity. Because the fingerprints wouldn't be stored in a central database,
    ]>individuals would retain complete control over how much personal information
    ]>was revealed. To maximize privacy, the system would keep no identifiable
    ]>records of who had passed through, and it would not be linked with any other
    ]>databases that might allow predictions of future behavior.
    ]>
    ]>Technology alone won't prevent mission creep. After the card's deployment,
    ]>Congress would have to prohibit the government from accessing private
    ]>fingerprint databases or linking them with other information without cause.
    ]>Such legislation is already in the pipeline: Russell Feingold (D-Wisconsin),
    ]>the only senator to vote against the USA Patriot Act, is sponsoring a bill
    ]>to restrict the use of predictive data mining. It revives a requirement that
    ]>the Patriot Act eliminated, limiting the most invasive surveillance
    ]>technologies to those who have been identified as unusually suspicious.
    ]>
    ]>None of those safeguards will guarantee market success. A private ID card
    ]>like Brill's, sold principally as a way to avoid long lines, might not
    ]>provoke Americans' mistrust of monitoring, but frequent fliers already avoid
    ]>long lines at airports. Building and stadium owners have no compelling
    ]>reason to invest in card readers if they don't help eliminate liability for
    ]>letting in terrorists. And many offices already issue their own IDs.

    ]We already have one. It is called your social security number that the
    ]legislature never intended for that use. The whole idea has been
    ]misconstrued and scope ctreeped over the years. My original card had on it
    ]very plainly printed not to be used for identification purposes. Well, look
    ]how that has all changed!

    ]Never support any kind of whacko ideas such as the above writer's
    ]suggestions. It will only lead to a socialist state.

    Socialist? Govenments of all stripes have been known to misuse their
    powers. The Nazi (despite the third word) were hardly what anyone would
    call a socialist state, nor was Franco's party. Nor were the Khmer
    Rouge. Nor were the Russian Secret Police befor the Revolution.

    But I agree that the temptation to misuse any such card would be great.
    As we saw, the dispruption in US life caused by 9-11 got Congress to
    throw out 200 (or more if you count the English tradition) years of
    mistrust of government and recind many protections of the citizen
    against the gov't. The US willingly stepped much closer to a police
    state. And with identity cards already in use, the temptation to subvert
    them becomes high and almost costless. If you have to introduce them, it
    takes time and huge amounts of money, both barriers.
    And for the determined, the forging of such cards, whether directly or
    by subverting the issuing of the cards, is not hard. Ie, precisely the
    people you want to use them against, are the ones that can also protect
    themselves. It is the ordinary citizen who has no protection.
     
    Bill Unruh, Jan 4, 2004
    #4
  5. Russell Mangum

    Alan P Guest

    I like your last point :)

    For a cracker, cracking an ID card may seem the ultimate prize

    "Bill Unruh" <> wrote in message
    news:bt9pkh$ef4$...
    > Anonymous <> writes:
    >
    > ]On Wed, 31 Dec 2003, "Russell Mangum" <> wrote:
    > ]>From http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.01/start.html?tw=wn_tophead_6
    > ]>
    > ]>Identity Crisis
    > ]>
    > ]>
    > ]>How to have a national ID card that doesn't threaten civil liberties.
    > ]>
    > ]>By Jeffrey Rosen
    > ]>
    > ]>Debate about the concept of a national identification card has been
    > ]>polarized in the extreme. Techno-positivists argue that for a secure

    state,
    > ]>the government should have access to as much data as possible.

    Principled
    > ]>libertarians respond that government shouldn't have access to any data

    at
    > ]>all - that a badly designed system could keep tabs on citizens' travel,
    > ]>spending, and personal habits.
    > ]>
    > ]>But a privacy-friendly card is feasible if it follows one simple rule:
    > ]>verification, not identification. In other words, the card would confirm
    > ]>identity but wouldn't allow the government to pick you out of a crowd.
    > ]>There's a model: In 1995, Canadian entrepreneur George Tomko invented an
    > ]>innovative technology that made it possible to lock packets of data in
    > ]>encrypted files, using a fingerprint as a private key. After clearing a
    > ]>background check, the users of a Tomko-like card would receive a

    digitized
    > ]>packet of information that said, for example, they were cleared to cross

    a
    > ]>particular border. They'd download the parcel onto a card and lock it

    with a
    > ]>thumbprint.
    > ]>
    > ]>Using this card at a border checkpoint, they'd swipe it and then provide

    a
    > ]>thumbprint. If the print decrypted the file, the system would verify

    their
    > ]>identity. Because the fingerprints wouldn't be stored in a central

    database,
    > ]>individuals would retain complete control over how much personal

    information
    > ]>was revealed. To maximize privacy, the system would keep no identifiable
    > ]>records of who had passed through, and it would not be linked with any

    other
    > ]>databases that might allow predictions of future behavior.
    > ]>
    > ]>Technology alone won't prevent mission creep. After the card's

    deployment,
    > ]>Congress would have to prohibit the government from accessing private
    > ]>fingerprint databases or linking them with other information without

    cause.
    > ]>Such legislation is already in the pipeline: Russell Feingold

    (D-Wisconsin),
    > ]>the only senator to vote against the USA Patriot Act, is sponsoring a

    bill
    > ]>to restrict the use of predictive data mining. It revives a requirement

    that
    > ]>the Patriot Act eliminated, limiting the most invasive surveillance
    > ]>technologies to those who have been identified as unusually suspicious.
    > ]>
    > ]>None of those safeguards will guarantee market success. A private ID

    card
    > ]>like Brill's, sold principally as a way to avoid long lines, might not
    > ]>provoke Americans' mistrust of monitoring, but frequent fliers already

    avoid
    > ]>long lines at airports. Building and stadium owners have no compelling
    > ]>reason to invest in card readers if they don't help eliminate liability

    for
    > ]>letting in terrorists. And many offices already issue their own IDs.
    >
    > ]We already have one. It is called your social security number that the
    > ]legislature never intended for that use. The whole idea has been
    > ]misconstrued and scope ctreeped over the years. My original card had on

    it
    > ]very plainly printed not to be used for identification purposes. Well,

    look
    > ]how that has all changed!
    >
    > ]Never support any kind of whacko ideas such as the above writer's
    > ]suggestions. It will only lead to a socialist state.
    >
    > Socialist? Govenments of all stripes have been known to misuse their
    > powers. The Nazi (despite the third word) were hardly what anyone would
    > call a socialist state, nor was Franco's party. Nor were the Khmer
    > Rouge. Nor were the Russian Secret Police befor the Revolution.
    >
    > But I agree that the temptation to misuse any such card would be great.
    > As we saw, the dispruption in US life caused by 9-11 got Congress to
    > throw out 200 (or more if you count the English tradition) years of
    > mistrust of government and recind many protections of the citizen
    > against the gov't. The US willingly stepped much closer to a police
    > state. And with identity cards already in use, the temptation to subvert
    > them becomes high and almost costless. If you have to introduce them, it
    > takes time and huge amounts of money, both barriers.
    > And for the determined, the forging of such cards, whether directly or
    > by subverting the issuing of the cards, is not hard. Ie, precisely the
    > people you want to use them against, are the ones that can also protect
    > themselves. It is the ordinary citizen who has no protection.
     
    Alan P, Jan 14, 2004
    #5
    1. Advertising

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