Diary of a Network Geek

The trials and tribulations of a Certified Novell Engineer who's been stranded in Houston, Texas.


Papers please!

Filed under: Criticism, Marginalia, and Notes,News and Current Events — Posted by the Network Geek during the Hour of the Hare which is terribly early in the morning or 6:47 am for you boring, normal people.
The moon is Waxing Crescent

Here are two sort of disturbing notes about identification.

First, according to this article at the Register.co.uk, there’s a move afoot to have smartcard, biometric passports in the US by the end of 2004. There’s already a move to have get them in the EU. This will, allegedly, make for more secure documents and identification of US citizens, but… And, there’s always a but, isn’t there? My concern is, how close will this take us to internal passports? How long before even my driver’s license is a smartcard that has all kinds of “security” data on it? I don’t know, this just bothers me a bit.
Secondly, according to this article on Wired News, moving to an “e-system” may not be the best idea. There are already problems with death certificate systems, so, do we want to accelerate those problems by putting them on a network? Would these problems make it harder or easier to get a falsified “smartcard” passport? There’s a lot of stuff that needs to be worked out with these two issues before I’m entirely comfortable with either.

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