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Driver's Licenses to Become National ID Cards

michael posted more than 12 years ago | from the mission-creep dept.

United States 976

XorNand writes: "Time is reporting that the Dept of Transportation, acting on instructions from Congress, is in the process of linking together states' drivers' license databases. They figure that it'll be cheaper and easier to slip under the radar of civil libertarians and privacy watchdogs. Wonder if Larry is a bit peeved that he's not getting his cut?"

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fist prost? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812627)

razzious domini plays dominos better than you fadda plays dominoes

This is all part of THE EVIL PLAN! (0, Troll)

Electric Angst (138229) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812636)

For more information, visit www.infowars.com [infowars.com] . They've got the inside scoop.

Re:This is all part of THE EVIL PLAN! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812731)

Alex Jones is on top of a lot of stuff even though he rants about black helicopters spraying mind-control substances on Austin neighborhoods and that the government has helicopters following him around town (why? when they've already implanted him with a subcutaneous transmitter).

Excellent! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812638)

So I just need to stop driving to become a nonperson! Well worth it, really.

Re:Excellent! (5, Interesting)

s0l0m0n (224000) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812763)

Nice thought.

Won't work for me here in OR, though.. Already don't drive. tried to explain to cop why no license (car == 2000 # steel + 15 gallons volitile liquid intention caused to combust in a contained fashion) and no ID card.. Told him it's not against the law.

they told me that THEY could arrest me if I didn't have an ID. I laughed at the time, until I found out it was true.

end of story.

Let me guess... (4, Funny)

Nightpaw (18207) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812639)

If you don't drive, you're a terrorist, right?

Re:Let me guess... (1)

carrier lost (222597) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812690)

Or an incurable drunken-driver. ;)


rw-rw-rw- : The new sign of the Beast

Re:Let me guess... (3, Funny)

telstar (236404) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812702)

Well, you're certainly not a soccer mom. When will somebody get them off the road?

Re:Let me guess... (1)

tregoweth (13591) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812720)

You've seen the car makers' commercials -- if you drive a car older than a year or two, you're helping the terrorists win!

Anyway, you can usually get a generic "state ID card." Unfortunately, most people have never heard of it, and think you're trying to use a bad fake ID.

Re:Let me guess... (0)

drsoran (979) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812799)

Why would you want to drive a car older than a year or two? Help the economy and buy a new car. We can't let Osama bin Laden win!

Re:Let me guess... (1)

7608 (515533) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812797)

No, only people who drive U-hauls will be subjected to random cavity searches. Lexus owners will be presumed innocent until the carbomb explodes.

I like this (0, Offtopic)

carrier lost (222597) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812642)

You can opt-out!


rw-rw-rw- : the new sign of the Beast

Re:I like this (1)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812688)

not if you'd like to drive anywhere or purchase beer/cigs without having to carry along your birth certificate(something which should most likely be kept in your safety deposit box).

Re:I like this (1)

Dephex Twin (416238) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812736)

Would they really accept a birth certificate which has no photo on it (obviously)?

You could use a passport though.


Re:I like this (1)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812803)

the problem with a passport is that your photo is once again entered into a national(shit, worldy) respitory. but no, I don't think a convience store would accept a birth certificate.

Re:I like this (1)

aka-ed (459608) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812809)

That is, in fact, what I use, being a non-driver and holding a dislike for "state id cards," which is the non-driver's alternative from the DMV.

The fact is, though, that many places that list acceptable options for identification do not include "passport."

This New History (1, Troll)

analemma (548936) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812644)

Why don't I have a voice? It's almost as if I must be a litigator or wrapped up in corporate America for my thoughts to change anything. What a great, awful time.

Wow, Man. That's So True. (-1)

Sexual Asspussy (453406) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812726)

jesus fucking christ, what are you in 3rd grade? spare us the side order of Fag next time, jizz-diviner

What's the big deal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812649)

So what's the big deal if my name is in some government database? It's not like I wasn't in any before...

In the worst possble German accent I can manage... (0)

Massive.Hex (213270) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812650)

Vhere arh your PAPers?! Ve must have your PAPers!

Re:In the worst possble German accent I can manage (2, Insightful)

SpacePunk (17960) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812737)

Try that in Hebrew/Israeli/Yiddish.


What about an ID number? (2, Informative)

eaddict (148006) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812652)

In MO (and probably most states) you can opt out of having your SSN (Social Secutiry Number) from being your DL number. What if these states overlap (ie I have 666 as my ID from MO and you have 666 from IL)? Wonder who will have to pay to correct this little oversite? This is just one thing off the top of my head...

Re:What about an ID number? (1)

taliver (174409) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812693)

Seems fairly trivial to include the state name as part of the "nationalization" of the DL. Also, most states , as far as I know, do not use the SSN for the DL. Not in cleartext anyway.

Re:What about an ID number? (1)

smack_attack (171144) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812711)

The id sequence would probably be something akin to CONCAT(idstate,idlicense) as idcitizen. So the guy in MO would be 32666 and IL would be 22666 (or something similar).

Really not all that difficult to transition to this system. If they are smart they will keep the license numbers seperate and changeable, but just link them into the database via SSN.

Re:What about an ID number? (1)

doctrbl (306815) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812714)

Slug it with the state initials for uniqueness...


Re:What about an ID number? (3, Insightful)

daoine (123140) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812728)

Furthermore - what about all the states that DON'T let you opt out of having your SSN on your license. Imagine having your credit rating linked to your driving record linked to the number of bars you visit linked to your medical records....

Right now the SSN is the key to a whole lot of information - one of the few things keeping the world from being 1984-like is the fact that the databases aren't readily accessible. The more the SSN becomes a commonplace number, the more someone can track/grab your identity.

Not to be paranoid or anything...

Re:What about an ID number? (0)

nilsey (513941) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812816)

perhaps on might append the state name to the ID number.

Constitution (1)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812653)

I thought anything responsibility like this not expressly given to the US Gov't by the constition was by that same constitution given to the state as a responsibility? Is this legal?

Pretty much the standard as it is... (4, Informative)

11thangel (103409) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812654)

I don't know very many places that don't require a driver's license as the standard form of identification. State sponsored photo ID's are basically the only form of ID that is accepted everywhere (i.e. using personal checks at stores, getting into nightclubs, etc). Making em national isn't going to be much of a change, except for 2 things. 1) Your less likely to be thrown out of a club in another state for having an ID they don't recognize, and 2) You can't get away with speeding in another state quite as easily, because now the state trooper has access to ALL the state databases :)

This makes perfect sense...it's a good thing (3, Interesting)

Artifice_Eternity (306661) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812725)

It's already the standard photo ID. It makes sense for the feds to require standardization of state IDs, so that all states have to meet the same requirments. E.g., I've lived in NY for a few years, and my wife has an NY state license...but my 4-year-old Florida license is much higher tech (plastic, digital photo, holograms) than the low-tech laminated paper NY state licenses.

You already have to show your license or something similar when flying. The chances of fraud will be reduced if we have common standards for all state ID cards.

Re:Pretty much the standard as it is... (1)

horster (516139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812745)

actually it changes the fact that since it is a national standard - companies could start asking for it, no demanding it, before every transaction - just like an ssn, but they can check it with just the swipe of a bar code reader.
nice huh?

Re:Pretty much the standard as it is... (2)

hrieke (126185) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812768)

Well, the speeding issue might not, since it's based on a state to state agreements.
What I'm more worried about is the fact that my SSN is on my driver's license, and I want it OFF.
Lose my walet, and I can lose my idenity. (Yes, I know it could happen already, but when all the states are linked, it's going to be rough).
I also have to wonder if I'll still get confused with my father? Had a great credit record because I bought a house when I was 5.

Re:Pretty much the standard as it is... (1)

ichimunki (194887) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812789)

The Department of Transportation, acting on instructions from Congress, has begun work with states to develop electronically smarter drivers' licenses that can be checked for validity across the country, and that have more than just than that always-awful picture â" like a fingerprint or retinal-scan imprint â" to match the card to its holder.

The part you missed: they are not simply going to connect existing systems as-is. They are planning to work with states to have "smarter" IDs. Frankly, I don't mind having my picture taken for the card, but a fingerprint or a retinal scan? Yer effing kidding right? How does this compare to ID card systems outside the USA, anyone know?

fp (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812657)

wow, fp

bs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812664)

bs bs bs

Missouri (1)

fo0bar (261207) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812667)

So if you live in Missouri (and another state, I can't remember which), your Social Security Number will become your National Identification number by proxy (in MO, the driver license numbers are the individual's SSN).


Re:Missouri (-1)

TRoLLaXoR (181585) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812716)

Missouri and Kansas both have the same policy on that, but you're mistaken: you can opt against using your SSN and have a randomly(?) generated number used instead.

I opted against the SSN when I got mine after moving out here, but something tells me after a while, this national Db means you won't be able to opt against the SSN anymore...

Reminds me of a book (-1)

TRoLLaXoR (181585) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812668)

Called 1984.

10 years from now, we'll be hearing something like "Let me ssee your paperss" but phrased a little friendlier and without the German accent.

This is double-plus not good.

i wonder... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812669)

did they go with oracle or sql...

Shouldn't it be... (3, Insightful)

robbyjo (315601) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812675)

Shouldn't the national ID be uniform across the country? In the sense that the kind of info displayed on the card and the lay out. If it is not uniform, then it's harder to detect forgery on those ID, especially if the ID is out-of-state.

Then, the question on the on-card security add-on implies that we're effectively getting a new driver's licence ID. I dunno why don't they just enforce a single, uniform ID in the first place?

Just my 2c.

so now we'll be nationally known (2, Funny)

motherfuckin_spork (446610) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812676)

by those god-awful pictures they take of us.

But will you be known... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812739)

as the spork who fucked his mother on mother's day?

Re:But will you be known... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812757)

here, let me think about that...


DMV Tests (1)

jmkaza (173878) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812679)

Does this mean I won't have to take a new driver's exam every time I move to a new state?

Re:DMV Tests (1)

mencik (516959) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812767)

Only if they also nationalize all the traffic laws so that they are the same from state to state. On the other hand, even if they did that, the new state would probably still want you to pay the exam fee just to get a little more money out of you.

FP (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812680)

this is cool

Press Leak (1)

Mannerism (188292) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812682)

Actually, the DoT was planning to tell you all about this tomorrow. [slashdot.org]

holy moly (1)

SpacePunk (17960) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812684)

It's the mark of the beast I tell ya! The end times are near! Run coward! Run!


Where does this leave Virginia? (3, Insightful)

Spamalamadingdong (323207) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812687)

Virginia, if you didn't know, is a state which once required only an affidavit of residency to get a driver's license. If it is that easy to get a DL in even one state, it's a piece of cake to have "legitimate ID" that is utterly bogus in truth.

The danger is that such a bogus ID will be taken as valid in more places and for more things due to its "national scope", and it'll be easier to get into things and do more damage than it is now (difficult concept, I know).

Re:Where does this leave Virginia? (1)

Skraig (168565) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812756)

VA was forced to change this after 9/11

Re:Where does this leave Virginia? (0, Interesting)

TRoLLaXoR (181585) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812778)

Having moved from OH to KS a while ago, and then purchasing a vehicle on a visit back to OH, I can share an anecdote regarding this.

In Kansas, they clipped the OH license upon handing me my KS license and told me to keep the OH license around in case I never needed a new KS license (it'd make it easier to do so should I ever lose my KS license). They told me that this began my new legal residence in KS and that the OH license was no longer valid.

In OH, when transferring the title on my new vehicle, they said as long as I don't try to use my OH license in OH (or anywhere, for that matter) I was OK. This is because I now hold primary residence in KS, and using the OH license as ID would be fraud.

Requiremts. for getting ID may be standard too (2)

Artifice_Eternity (306661) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812787)

In NY state now, you have to have 6 points of proof of name to get a DL. You get certain amounts of points for each of various docs -- out of state license, credit card, ATM card, etc.

You also have to have proof of date of birth, which is the tough one. Basically you need a passport, military ID or birth certificate. I have no passport or military ID, so I have to somehow track down my birth certificate (an original, not a copy) before I can get my NY state license.

I believe all this is post-Sep.-11. It used to be much easier...

What about.... (1)

The Great Wakka (319389) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812691)

Not everyone drives. So maybe the Driver's ID can be replaced with a simple National ID card, which is stampted with driver's license stamp, PIN, alchohol stamp, voter's stamp...

But this actually sounds like a GOOD idea. You really aren't sacrifing your privacy, because it's info already avalible about you: Age, Gender, Driving Class. So what's the big deal? Or am I just igornant?

Wow, that's a lot of data (2)

Mike Schiraldi (18296) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812695)

Don't forget that most (all?) states take a digital picture of you when they make your license, so the government now has an immense database of faces.

I'll let everyone else debate whether this is Big Brother or healthy law enforcement. But one thing's for sure: buy stock in face-recognition software companies!

Re:Wow, that's a lot of data (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812751)

In Florida, they revamped the driver's license and changed to the digital photo about a year or two after I got my license. Thanks to the magic of renewal-by-mail, I won't have a picture in the system until 2007. Muwahahaha!

2nd post (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812696)

i win!

non-photo drivers licenses (2)

mz001b (122709) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812697)

What about states (like NJ) that don't require a photo on the drivers license?

Re:non-photo drivers licenses (1)

nbvb (32836) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812724)

I *love* the fact that I can have a non-photo driver's license.

I think it's awesome NOT to have my picture on my license.

Lets me grasp onto that last straw of freedom before they implant the brain-chip!


Damn... (1)

meggito (516763) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812700)

Well, I'm 17 now and won't have my license until after I'm 18. So until then what? Its a good thing I know how to fly a plane from military school. I'll just get my pilot's license and... wait, wasn't that what started this all?

Fark (slashdot rival) has been USAToday-d (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812701)

USA Today ran (and printed) an article about Dave Thomas and Fark. Apparently, one too many moms fired up AOL and headed over; the site is very much down. It is serving pages now, but no cgi.

Let's hear it for the wonders of mySQL (and slow-ass Perl)!

SSN# (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812704)

What the hell is the point of the social security number then?

Uh-oh... (2)

daeley (126313) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812708)

So this means I won't be able to get back into the country if I lose my corrective lenses? ;-)

Seriously, though:
"Of course, that could make life easier for you too. What if your state/national ID card was your passport as well as your drivers' license? What if you could do your taxes at an ATM -- and then withdraw your refund? Or what if your national ID card was your ATM card, and your credit card, and your HMO card and your work ID and the passkey to your maximum-security apartment, all at once?"

I'm gonna wait for the implants to come around before adopting this. Don't need my muggers getting free health care when they steal my wallet.

Somebody's always watching.. (0)

Daemonator (549241) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812709)

This is frightning. So when do we get mod chips for our id's? Theres goes my after school job...

easy solution: one state without any real (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812712)

population will offer driver's licenses for out of state residents w/o any of the advanced id technology.

It'd make millions if not billions for say: Montana, Nevada, Wyoming, North Dakota, or Alaska.

Can you copyright/trademark your dna, fingerprint, retinal scan and then sue anyone who wants to have them in a database?

right to privacy? (2, Insightful)

zook (34771) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812734)

From the article (emphasis mine):
Most of the privacy rights - if there really are such things - vulnerable to a nationalized ID card have already been trampled under the wheels of increased security, more efficient law enforcement and better business long ago.

And there lies the problem.

It's too bad that the 28th amendment will probably ban flag burning instead of doing something useful.

Yeah, a license to drive (0, Troll)

Kohath (38547) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812738)

How about giving me a license to walk, eat food, or breathe air while you're at it? Driver's licenses are a ridiculous and unnecessary concept. Too bad all you people bought into it.

Re:Yeah, a license to drive (2)

recursiv (324497) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812779)

It's much harder to kill or seriously injure someone when you're eating, walking, or breathing. With a 2-ton piece of metal at your command, this becomes much easier to do. So some training is in order before one should be allowed to drive. A driver's license is merely proof of this training.

Re:Yeah, a license to drive (1)

Peyna (14792) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812804)

I'm sorry, but I think driver's licenses do make sense. Otherwise a 10 year old might get behind the wheel of a car and slam into while I'm crossing the street. Or a 100 year old, or anyone for that matter. Licensing people to drive, fly, or perform other activities is a very important idea, and is a useful protection.

Just like fishing licenses are there to protect the fish, hunting licenses to protect game, (and other hunters), etc. Most licenses have a very useful purpose.

Anyone who thinks this isn't a national ID card... (1)

gpinzone (531794) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812742)

...has never been to an urban DMV location. I went to one to replace my "misplaced" driver's license during my lunch hour. (I gave my license to a security guard to get into a secure building and the numbskull gave it to someone else.) I found out that the DMV in NY gives out special "non-driver" driver's licenses to people who DON'T (or can't) drive. Since this was a poor urban area, I was the only one there in line for a "driver's" licence. The other hundred people on line were just there to get what amounted to an official NY State ID card.

Saw on Dateline last night... (5, Interesting)

jbfaninmo (540470) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812743)

How incredibly easy it was for them to get fake drivers licenses, SS Numbers and Birth certificates. So now if you get a driver's license in California under a fake name, you can create a person that exsists in every single state. I don't see how this will help.

I wonder if Bin Ladin won (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812747)

We have never given up so many of our rights and freedoms.
I suspect that future generations will look back at us
and decide that we were as short-sighted as 1932 germany

What about people who dont have a car licence? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812748)

There are lots of people who cant get a car licence due to disabilities. (limited vision, etc)

As fare as I'm conserned the main ID is a passport. (If you loose it your screwed if your in another country than your own)

Drivers Licenses as an Invasion of Privacy (1)

EraseEraseMe (167638) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812750)

On a typical drivers license, the following information is recorded:
  • Name
  • Date of Birth
  • Address (Presumably current)
  • Picture
  • Eye Colour
  • Hair Colour
  • Height
  • Weight
  • Sex
As the article specifically says "This wouldn't be so different that what's already in place". In fact, the article is pretty clear in regards to exactly what ramifications this will have for the ordinary citizen...None. The major concern was for the fact that non-governmental agencies would soon have access to your personal records, which is more than a little fear-mongering.

What happens if you don't have a drivers liscense? (1)

amuro98 (461673) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812758)

I know a lot of people who don't have a drivers liscense (live in large cities - don't need one.)

Sure, there are state IDs, but I'm sure we've all heard stories about how these aren't even readily accepted within the state they were issued in as pieces of valid ID.

Driver's license homogenation (1)

torklugnutz (212328) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812759)

I'm fron Nevada, and our DMV still uses Polaroid based, heat laminated ID's. CA, NT, AZ, etc. use digital camera, high tech things with magnetic stripes on the back. If these are going to be some form of national ID, it seems like the various states would have to agree on a standard format. Sounds like another excuse to waste money, lenghthen lines, and increase fees. Hooray.

DAMN! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812760)

this sucks. Now, not only will the state trooper who pulls me over have my ID picture, but all the future state troopers who are going to pull me over in the future have it, too.

The preceding comment made no sense.

good-- (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812761)

--because you can op out by not having a driver's license.

What about (1)

nuclearsnake (257605) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812764)

All us people that do not drive? Will we not be allowed to buy booze?

what about? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812766)

Billy Joe Bob with the mad-crazy mullet from hell gonna do when he was born in a barn and raised by sheep?

How are points going to work (2)

Krimsen (26685) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812769)

What if you move from one state to another? Will driving points remain? Come to think of it, what happens now?

passport is national id (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812770)

and will be accepted at banks in the us.

they will complain but it is proof of citizenship and legal federal id.

You can even open a non-interest bearing bank account with a foreign passport...don't know about a domestic usa passport at a us bank

Oops... (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812771)

Guess I better contact Chicago about paying those two outstanding parking tickets from 1991...

I worry not just a little about how this could go wrong, since when I applied for mine in California (which was already doing this with some states as of 1997) and informed someone did something shady with my Michigan drivers liscense (which had been picked with my wallet at Cedar Point) in Ohio and a warrant may be out for me there. I've been too lazy to contact the Ohio State Police (or whatever they call themselves, Buckies?) to straighten it all out (also worried I'd have to blow money on a lawyer and/or plane ticket just to claim my innocense :P ) As we all learn eventually, you have to work to preserve your freedom. Guess I should make an effort there before any of the above interfer with my ability to get Thai take-out.

"You bad man! We no serve! No gang phed for you Chollie!"

Bush won't let this happen (4, Funny)

8string (316088) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812774)

If he does, his daughters fake ids won't work anymore.


rights (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812777)

apparently you have to drive to have rights in the US

Standardized format (1)

crow (16139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812780)

While I'm not excited about the privacy implications of a national ID system, I do think it makes sense for states to standardize the format of the ID cards they issue. I've heard of places simply refusing to recognize out-of-state licenses because they can't keep their employees up to speed on recognizing which ones are fakes.

Good news for all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812781)

Ever visited your friend in another state and have been denied alcohol because you had an out-of-state license?

Of course that won't be the greatest benefit. I think most European countries have some sort of national ID issued by the state and that's been missing in the U.S.

Don't get paranoid about 'big brother' stuff. If anything, worry about credit cards...


What is the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812783)

Jake: How you gonna accomplish your evil terrorist plot? John Ashcroft got your name, your address...

Elwood:No, they don't got my address. I falsified my renewal. I put down 1060 West Addison.

Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812784)

Oh shit! - I can't take part in an uprising today.
Cowboy Bebop is on Cartoon Network!


ss# (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812785)

I believe that you have to use your SS# when you get a drivers license in every state now. And SS#s were not to be used for tracking or identification other than for tax reasons, so this scares the heck out of me. ;-{

I'd Be Proud!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812786)

To have a membership card in the biggest and coolest club, the United States, I would gladly accept this.

Time is a lackey (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812792)

There whole premise is the same as that of Scott McNeally - you already don't have any privacy so why get worked up about this. We've already fallen halfway down the slipperly slope, so why bother trying to climb back out?

It is arguments like Time's that got us here in the first place and once we've had cards forced on us in the "land of the free" the next thing they will be arguing is that it makes life safer for all of us and that so few people get screwed by the system that it isn't worth getting worked up over. Never mind that when you do get screwed by the system it is most likely going to be an ass-fucking royal with cheese.

SIN-less (2)

White Roses (211207) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812795)

You know, Single Identification Number, from the Gibson books. IIRC, it wasn't impossible to be SIN-less, it just made your life very difficult. The main SIN-less character was in Mona Lisa Overdrive, and she had a pretty lousy existence. So, everybody line up for your original SIN. Or become a homeless, drug addicted hooker. Your choice, really. And that's freedom, right?

Unique Key (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812798)

What would the unique key be for something like that? Is there a link between SS# and Drivers Lic# ?

National db okay, national ID stupid. (1)

Anonymous Freak (16973) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812800)

I am perfectly fine with the idea of a national database fully connected to all federal agencies, state agencies, and even private agencies.

What I don't want is a national ID card. Or even 50 state ID cards, or 4 credit cards, 2 library cards, 2 student ID cards, an ATM card, a subway card, a frequent buyer card, ad nauseum... I want biometric ID for everything. Screw an ATM machine, and a credit card swiper, and police asking for lic and reg. I want an optical (or fingerprint, facial, whatever) scanner that IDs you, and lets you do anything, anywhere. No PIN number, no account number, no nothing. Just a bio-scan. Heck, I'm sick of 10 email addresses, four phone numbers, two addresses plus a post office box....

Okay, so that's unreasonable. But all we really need is one ID number, with biometric ID backup. I should be able to freely give out my 'personal ID number' such as a SS# to anyone, at any time, with no fear of being abused, beacuse in order to do anything as me, you'd need to be me. Not even needing that number would be preferable, and fine with me (my full name is unique on the planet,) but all those John Smiths and Bill Johnsons would have problems. (Maybe name+birthdate? Nah, there's got to be more than one John Smith born on 1/1/50.)

So, if someone can find a way to uniquely identify each person on the globe with an easily remembered, (and transmitted via text,) and combine it with a universal, cheap biometric identifier, you'll be a billionaire.

The scary part (5, Insightful)

rgmoore (133276) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812802)

I'm not sure which is the scarier part of the article- the way it blythely assures you that this isn't really a significant step because the civil liberties damage is already done, or the fact that this is probably true. As they point out, all this involves is linking together data that's already kept and making it a bit easier to access. The problem is that making it easier to access will make it that much more tempting to access it for more and more trivial reasons. If it's really possible to check any driver's licence just by scanning it, how long will it be until you have to scan your license to buy alcohol or tobacco, rather than just showing it (or here in California not bothering to show it because nobody seems to care)?

early post (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812810)

This early post made in the name of Spain! Huzzah!

Nothing to worry about. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2812812)

The Secretary of State has proven they can't operate a polaroid, so I put little confidence in their ability to perform a retinal scan and attatching it to an ID card. What good is a retinal scan when the information on your ID card is of your left nostril and not your eye?

What if I... (2, Insightful)

gillbates (106458) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812813)

Copyrighted my name, address, and other personal data, and sued everyone who maintained my personal data without my permission for copyright infringement?

Just a thought...

But seriously, though, if information is property, how long will it be before everyday citizens claim their personal information as IP? How long will it be before we get a right to privacy? How much of Big Brother and Big Corp invading our lives does it take?

It has been for awhile... (2)

billmaly (212308) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812814)

My driver's license became my Natl. ID as soon as the State of Iowa started using digital cameras to capture (and no doubt store) my image for the license, and probably before.

Try doing much of anything that matters WITHOUT a form of state issued ID, and for the most part, you will be SOL. National ID's are here, and have been here for quite some time. Get over it OR get used to it.

hmm (1)

DeadPrez (129998) | more than 12 years ago | (#2812815)

This seems silly. They seem to think this will assure whoever is handing you the drivers license is in fact the person who is on the license. Exactly how is this done? You could just steal someone else's card who looks like you or possibly just have someone people in the inside create a fake record for you (lets not pretend this isn't already done).

Furthermore, whenever I don't want to be tracked (they use monica's books bought a credit card as an example) I just don't use a credit card. I pay in cash. Are we going to have to swipe our driver license for cash transactions? Or do we just continue to pay in cash and not get tracked?

End result: this fails in the same way the patriot act fails to deal with terrorists. It addresses the symptons, not the problem. If a terrorist is going to kill himself, I doubt he gives a crap if you can track down who he is after the fact.
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