Archive for the ‘DHS’ Category

LIFE  IMITATES  ART: Fictionalized representation of US IDENT badge
depicted in Richard Kelley’s film Southland Tales



c/o EFF’s Jennifer Lynch


“This week, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) and several other organizations released documents from a FOIA lawsuit that expose the concerted efforts of the FBI and DHS to build a massive database of personal and biometric information. This database, called “Next Generation Identification” (NGI), has been in the works for several years now. However, the documents CCR posted show for the first time how FBI has taken advantage of the DHS Secure Communities program and both DHS and the State Department’s civil biometric data collection programs to build out this $1 billion database.” 


:::MORE HERE:::


RELATED: 

DIY GOVERNMENT
PETITION: Tell Congress, Put a stop to FBI abuses and let Mueller’s term expire 

Chris Comisac, Captiolwire
c/o NVCCA

A Senate committee on Wednesday unanimously reported out a bill to block Pennsylvania’s participation in the federal REAL ID program.  This bill could be altered before getting a final Senate vote, based on concerns voiced by lawmakers before the final committee vote.

Senate Bill 354, sponsored by Sen. Mike Folmer, R-Lebanon, would exempt Pennsylvania from having to comply with the provisions of the 2005 federal REAL ID law, which established new mandates on states regarding the distribution of drivers’ licenses.

According to the federal Department of Homeland Security, regulations created pursuant to the REAL ID Act set minimum standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards. The law sets standards for information and security features that must be incorporated into each card; for application information to establish the identity and immigration status of a person before a card can be issued; and for physical security at facilities where driver’s licenses and applicable identification cards are produced.

While the department and the law’s supporters maintain this effort seeks to reduce identity theft and to help fight terrorism, others argue it makes things worse.

Opponents of the federal effort have called the REAL ID provisions an invasion of privacy and a possible method to abridge additional freedoms currently enjoyed by Americans.

Sen. Bob Mensch, R-Montgomery, said during Wednesday’s meeting that two consecutive presidential administrations have failed to appropriately address the nation’s immigration issues, “and yet the federal government turns around and says ‘we want to document those of you who are here legally.’”

“I just don’t like the notion that they want to document us, and control – and perhaps even limit – our ability to move through the country,” added Mensch.

Folmer said the federal government is overstepping its authority.

“We need to say ‘we have 10th amendment rights in this state, you [the federal government] shouldn’t be doing this, you have no business doing this and we’re saying no in PA,’” said Folmer, majority chairman of the committee, referring to U.S. Constitution’s principle of federalism.

That part of the Bill of Rights provides that powers not granted to the federal government nor prohibited to the states by the Constitution are reserved to the states or the people.
Folmer also called the federal act an unfunded mandate on the commonwealth at a time when Pennsylvania already faces a huge deficit.

But it is a federal law, and one, unless it is repealed or invalidated, with which states have to comply, said a few senators.

“I wish the federal government would not have done this, I think it’s wrong,” said Sen. Pat Vance, R-Cumberland, “I wish they wouldn’t [have done it], but they did – that’s the point.”
Vance initially said she couldn’t support Folmer’s bill as long as the REAL ID act is a federal law.

Both Folmer and Mensch said when the federal government does something it shouldn’t, states should object to the federal actions.

“When federal laws are passed that aren’t right, and we just continue to comply to them, when is it going to end?” asked Folmer. “We have a duty, I think, to do this.”

“When the federal government is wrong, I think it is the duty of each state to say to the federal government ‘Hey, you’re wrong, let’s stop doing this foolishness,’” said Folmer.

He said if enough states push back against the federal law, the effort could convince the federal government to rescind it.

Vance and others, noting their objection to the federal law, explained their primary concern is what would happen to Pennsylvanians if the state refuses to comply and federal officials don’t abandon the REAL ID effort.

“If we do pass this [bill] in Pennsylvania, what happens to the [federal] requirement that we would need to have these identification cards to board commercial flights, to go into federal courthouses, etc.?” asked Vance.

Committee staff said it was their belief that other alternative identification options would be allowable under the federal law.

“But if that doesn’t happen, how do we board planes and go into [federal] public buildings?” Vance again asked.

“I want to make sure we’re not penalizing the citizens in the commonwealth, right now, who won’t be able to board a plane or go into a [federal] building” if the federal requirements aren’t waived or invalidated, she said.

“I think it [the Folmer bill] bears further discussion once it comes out of committee because I think there are serious concerns, and I think Sen. Vance has voiced some of those,” said Sen. Edwin “Ted” Erickson, R-Delaware.

Sen. Lisa Baker, R-Luzerne, asked if it would be appropriate to insert language into the bill that would address Vance’s concern.Hearing the senators’ concerns, Folmer assured Vance he would work with her to develop something to address her concerns.

“I understand your concern,” said Folmer. “I would not want to hurt anyone down the road.”
Vance said given Folmer’s commitment to her, she would support reporting the bill from committee.

Before the final vote, the committee unanimously amended the bill in response to a request by the state Department of Transportation.

According to Folmer, the department expressed concerns that without changes, Senate Bill 354 is written so broadly that it would prohibit the department “from complying with any provisions of the Real ID law, including the department’s existing fraud deterrent measures and ongoing procedures to reduce fraud and identity theft.”

Similar legislation was approved by the Senate last session, but the session ended before the bill received a vote in the state house of Representatives. In 2008, the House approved a similar bill, but it didn’t get a vote in the Senate.

If the bill becomes law, Pennsylvania would join [at least]16 other states that have enacted such laws.

BTC – You have until exactly June 8th to contest the implementation of yet *ANOTHER* national ID  program, according to Cato, integrating the motor vehicle driver license records into E-Verify’s labor records databases.

You may submit comments, identified by docket number DHS-2011-0030 by one of the following methods:

Federal e-Rulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.

Follow the instructions for submitting comments.

Fax: 703-483-2999.

Mail: Mary Ellen Callahan, Chief Privacy Officer, Privacy Office, Department of Homeland Security, Washington, DC 20528.

Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name and docket number for this rulemaking. All comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov,
including any personal information provided.

Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received go to http://www.regulations.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For general questions, please contact:
Janice Jackson, Acting Privacy Branch Chief, Verification Division,
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services,
Department of HomelandSecurity,
Washington, DC 20528.

For privacy issues please contact:
Mary Ellen Callahan (703-235-0780),
Chief Privacy Officer, Privacy Office,
Department of Homeland Security, Washington, DC 20528.

“People will be able to opt out of receiving all 
but the presidential alerts.”


BTC – Today is May 11th – 6th Anniversary of the passage of the Real ID Act.  Downsize D.C. [ ol’ faithful] calls in for back up with some D.i.Y DIRECT ACTION towards the repeal of Real ID.

Obviously it’s about a lot more than just Real ID anymore. The world is filled with all kinds of nasty data surveillance, data siezures, identity theft and information fleecing. Whether it’s public or private, it’s like living in public nowadays.

Here is second life for news that matters:

Every Six Hours, the NSA Gathers as Much Data as Is Stored in the Entire Library of Congress

Revised ‘Net Censorship Bill Requires Search Engines To Block Sites, Too SO…there’s an ACTION ALERT: ICA sounds the alarm on.NET surveillance, siezures, KEEP DUMPING ON COMMENTS

MORE GRILLED APPLE & HANDHELDS: DOJ wants wireless providers to store user info -You can watch how the AG and Congress is handling mobile  privacy here on CSPAN.  Meanwhile, theres a federal pilot to put chips in cellphones for govt. sponsored alerts in NYC and D.C.

Copious Commentary ala .GOV data surveillance FLOGGER Jim Harper, who has to ask thrice: DO YOU WANT PRIVACY? Terms and conditions apply….If you want Privacy, we start by blinding you! Then increase government surveillance! Nevermind! WE NEED TO CENSOR! 

ZDNet’s David Chernoff rebutts, Want privacy? Take Responsibility.

Facebook is still in denial that people want privacy at all… Mission control; we certainly have a problem.

IF YOU WERE IN A COMA…  Wired.com’s THREAT LEVEL BLOG has been doing some exclusive coverage of the FBI’s mobile surveillance package which fits onto your car.  There’s a battle brewing over FBI’s warrantless GPS tracking devices.  They cover how to inspect and remove one of these bastards if you find one on your car.

http://c.brightcove.com/services/viewer/federated_f9?isVid=1

FYI: There’s an International Summit on Health Privacy June 13 in Washington, D.C.

“A 55-page document (PDF) released by the White House today adds a few more details to the proposal, which still remains mostly hazy and inchoate. ” 

More at Privacy Inc. c/o CNET.com

BTC-  NSTIC’s stated aims are to provide better consumer protections against online identity theft because “passwords are broken” and to increase American economic efficacy in the online and world marketplaces.

Highlights from today’s press conference featured Sen. Barbara Mukulski’s work on NSTIC’s piece of the cybersecurity budget and pricing to initiate the program at $25 million in taxpayer seed money. According to Andy Ozment, White House Director of Identity Management, a budget is available from the Dept. of Commerce for FY 2012.  NIST’s Senior Advisor of ID Management stated that some of the NSTIC proposal structure was inspired by the Department of Defense’s use of CAC cards, a smart ID card for government beneficiaries.  According to Ozment, there was no connection to legislative efforts on the Hill and the direction the NSTIC program.

Here are some examples of breaking Homeland Security and cyber privacy legislative actions this week.

DHS stated that it was proud to join the Chamber of Commerce on the NSTIC effort as it continues coordination between agencies.  The security credential was inarticulately explained to an HHS audience member asking how NSTIC would be utilized for patients medical records and data handling on an International scale. While it was repeatedly stated that NSTIC plans to be private sector led, one panelist made it known that government would be,”the longest pole in the tent”.  Individual’s state-to-federal use of the NSTIC credential was likened to online ID encryption used by Universities.  Part of its economic strategy would affect foreign trade policy standards, with clear intent to steer International identity credentials for Internet use. CDT’s, Leslie Harris and NIST were among many who vociferously challenged the prospect of the US government’s new “identity ecosystem” as a national ID card program.

Meanwhile, Florida may be an early adopter of US online identity credentials and standards, as they are swiftly moving SB 1150 through the legislature.  Online authentication may be available to add to drivers licenses as soon as January 1, 2012.  Florida is also in the process of adopting Real ID compliant standards for their licenses.

Workshops, pilot programs and efforts to gather stakeholder input to implement the NSTIC program are planned for 3-5 years.

Here’s second life for news that matters:  

“The administration claims participation in the identity ecosystem will be entirely voluntary and users can choose to remain anonymous online. But privacy and civil rights advocates are sure to be concerned over what could be viewed as an attempt to create a type of digital ID card.” – Hillicon Valley 

With passwords “broken,” US rolls out Internet identity plan

White House To Release Final Trusted Identity Plan
c/o Information Week

Commentary by Kevin Gosztola at Op-Ed News:

“Finally how appropriate is it that this plan is being unveiled at the US Chamber of Commerce? As reported by ThinkProgress in February, the US Chamber of Commerce communicated with private contractors that provide cybersecurity services to the US government — HBGary Federal, Palantir, Berico Technologies. It discussed with these cybersecurity service providers how ChamberWatch, the SEIU, MoveOn, ThinkProgress and other groups could be targeted and proposed efforts “to steal private computer information, spy on the families of the Chamber’s critics, and plant false documents within organizations opposed to the Chamber’s agenda.” (These same companies were also discovered to have developed plans to help Bank of America by sabotaging WikiLeaks through similar tactics.”  :::MORE HERE:::

WHO’S ON BOARD:

CA Technologies Champions White House Initiative to Create “Identity Ecosystem” [Kantara Initiative]

Northrop Grumman, Microsoft, CA Technologies and CertiPath Participate in National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace Announcement