Thursday, July 28, 2011

Can Real ID live up to it's base security framework for driver's licenses?

BTC- Homeland Security News performed an exit interview with Heritage fellow, Jena Baker McNeil, who expressed Real ID is "absolutely necessary".  To our shock and awe, she conveyed belief that Real ID is not a national ID system.
"HSNW: The Department of Homeland Security insists that REAL ID is not a national ID instead it only imposes federal standards for IDs but leaves the operation and maintenance of databases in the hands of states. Despite these claims, would you consider REAL ID to constitute a national ID?
JBM: I agree with DHS. There is not a single database created to serve REAL ID. It simply directs states to network their own databases together so that they can talk to one another and try to identify fraud. No one in the federal government will be able to access any information—meaning there is nothing “national” about the process."

To wit, I asked State and national advocates to chime in her recalculation of the relevance of Real ID.

The First Responder on the scene was Pennsylvania voice of veteran advocate, Aaron Bollenger.

"This is all part of the NCIC Clarksburg, WV data hub. Who has access? States. Where is biometric info collected? States. The statement that “no one in the fed gov will be able to access any information” is just a rude LIE. This “network” also includes members of the AAMVA, who has their own collection of info. Picture a government-access-only Internet teeming with info on the lives of their sheep. That’s what this is all about. “National ID” is a matter of semantics, and a question of degree. All irrelevant when the reality is the data IS being collected AND shared."

There is the hanging question of what happens to the license information funnelled through the private network handlers at AAMVA. This government information clearinghouse contractor is networked over all of the US and almost every province of Canada. They could provide such a service. What, if anything, would be stopping them?

The majority of what has driven Real ID's continental network for secured license standards so far has been AAMVA's drivers license security framework.  A point of real grief for States has been coming along the sidelines making determinations on less nefarious points of the framework standards: tamper proof laminates, holograms, magnetic strips, the bar codes etc.  Immigration enforcement implications, costs of implementation, privacy violations, public outrage over lengthy lines and extreme demand on proof of identity conventions created many States' wedge on what is known as Real ID today.

One ofthe "Business Requirements" from the AAMVA framework is that,"All North American MVAs shall accept and endorse the eight privacy principles  as specified in Appendix “05-4.5-03 Privacy Principles.” 

These principles put limits on data retention, acknowledge persons rights to examine information kept about themselves and requests for corrections, disclosure limitations, information security and the public be made aware about all systems and databases where their license information is held.

"Each MVA shall ensure it has a means to oversee the previously mentioned principles."

So why the big frakas over Real ID? It could be the penchant for internal fraud. This haunting problem has not been overcome as recently as this week. It might be a key reason in deducing why REAL ID shouldn't be a requirement at all, much less a necessity. MVA's don't yet completely have the wield to justify the additional responsibility to live up to the security rigors of REAL ID.

States, like Florida, who have created literally impossible requirements for drivers to provide proof of identity.  License offices have been aggregating anything from marriage records to biometrics in a local database. There is literally no assurance that this information won't suddenly become part of a DMV information moonlight sale to ANYONE.

The Heritage Institute cannot assure New York or Florida license holders that their data will be safe when local drivers license administrators are corrupting fundamental information and license security holding patterns.  Unfortunately, license holders in most Northeastern seaboard States are also sitting ducks.  The ugly truth is local license admins are undermining the relevance of Real ID with much better success than millions of angry license holders and an army of immigration lawyers.

There is no real way to hold up AAMVA's "driver's license agreement" because the stone truth is no matter how secure an ID card may be - the information space where it is held is not.

Forbes' TravelGeek tackles Trusted Traveller demand for Real ID

*Special thanks to working activists Phil Mocek & Edward Hasbrouck

To get the deep scoop on items like Trusted Traveller, Passenger Name Recognition and other stern demands for traveller identity in real-time , visit 

You can also stay on top of regional action alerts to respond to increased demand for identity from the US Travel Association. 

Op-Ed: The Heritage Foundation Gets it Wrong on REAL ID

c/o Paul Henry for Floridians Against Real ID

Florida made $62 million by selling Florida drivers' license information

c/o JP

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

NIST's Grant under Fierce IT heatlamp for NSTIC's similarities to Federal Identity Credential Access Management Roadmap (FICAM)

READ IT : FGIT Q&A with Jeremy Grant on NSTIC implications for government IT

Here is the bottom segment of a letter I submitted to NIST in lieu of public comment.
"Please reconsider the NSTIC program for an Interagency security use within the walls of the government sector as policy. It simply isn’t a very appropriate amenity for mainstream civilian living. It has a place and a market, but it should be appropriated to places where surreptitious demand for ID is required already.

NSTIC will face a lot of opposition for coaching this society to upsurge identity requirements for absolutely everything they do for the sake of commerce."
Here is a copy of the FICAM Roadmap.  Explore the similarities between FICAM & NSTIC today!

Bank ‘Activity’ Required For Wisconsin Voter ID

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

"Barack Obama Thinks Your Password Sucks" c/o Gizmodo

ACTION ALERT: Denounce the nomination of FBI Dir. Robert Mueller for intelligence abuses

All in for Waking Up Orwell

More sea changes for Waking Up Orwell include basic ad revenues


Dear Readers,

Bad things happen to good people everyday. Waking Up Orwell was narrowing on adding it's air content to a Seattle metro station, when a sponsor was unable to monetarily sustain their end of the agreement. It's a tough time for a lot of businesses right now; but it is also a really tough time for Waking Up Orwell.

Our broadcast goals are very tough to do on a low-to-no budget, but it is important not to settle for Internet broadcasts when you can really do better. We feature the high-pitched sounds of alarm on electronic privacy and ways you can manage on your own two feet.  We are your call to defend yourself from data surveillance and arbitrary government intrusion.

We intend to continue to serve and empower you.

We have shelved almost everything else to devote time and effort to shopping this program to the right affiliates and porting in the program to be a success this Summer. It wouldn't be the first time in broadcast history for a sponsor to default on a contract or agreement when it came time to deliver. All the more reason we really need your referrals and assistance to support sponsorship of Waking Up Orwell. 

We need sponsors now to move forward and to reclaim our airspace duties.

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For Waking Up Orwell and,

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