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Homeland Security To Scan Citizens Exiting US

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the subtle-messages dept.

Security 676

An anonymous reader writes "The US Department of Homeland Security is set to kickstart a controversial new pilot to scan the fingerprints of travellers departing the United States. From June, US Customs and Border Patrol will take a fingerprint scan of travellers exiting the United States from Detroit, while the US Transport Security Administration will take fingerprint scans of international travellers exiting the United States from Atlanta. The controversial plan to scan outgoing passengers — including US citizens — was allegedly hatched under the Bush Administration. An official has said it will be used in part to crack down on the US population of illegal immigrants."

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fp (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132005)

eay my asshole, you fags!

Re:fp (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132289)

sed -n '4p' Flames
I'm gonna rip your head off and shit down your neck

What?!??!? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132015)

This has got to be a joke. BTW -- first!!!

Idiocy (5, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132025)

"An official has said it will be used in part to crack down on the US population of illegal immigrants"

Why not just let them leave? And bar them when they try to come back. What is the point of catching someone you don't want in the country when they are leaving it??

Re:Idiocy (4, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132131)

Probably because we don't actually seem to care much.

On the other hand, the fact that a fair few Americans are more xenophobic than they are freedom-loving presents a golden opportunity...

Re:Idiocy (0, Troll)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132147)

It's not a matter of xenophobia. For most people anyway. Illegal immigration is a very real social and economic problem.

Re:Idiocy (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132171)

And so is the continual expansion of State power, particularly at the federal level, in the name of "security". I'd argue that a lot of people are letting their fear of immigrants drive them right into that.

Re:Idiocy (0, Troll)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132337)

I might be less critical of such actions if it weren't for the fact that "security" isn't being improved or actually even being addressed.

I remember clearly how all of this started falling together and even I, with my stupidity and naiveity thought the first thing they would do would be to close the physical borders! After all, that's where all the brown-skinned people come and go through. And don't for a minute think I am being racist, just OBVIOUS. The people who allegedly did the 9-11 attacks had brown skin and are rather indistinguishable from the brown-skinned people south of the U.S border.

But they didn't... kept it open for a good long time with only occasional threats at putting up a wall and stuff.

The measure they have taken seem to be aimed more at people who are here in the U.S. legally (like citizens and all) than illegals. The same seems to be true of "copy protection" schemes which are little more than playback protection. The warrantless wiretapping program also seems to be aimed domestically as have other programs. And I have yet to see anything that actually makes us "safer."

Re:Idiocy (5, Insightful)

Wrath0fb0b (302444) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132367)

It's not a matter of xenophobia. For most people anyway. Illegal immigration is a very real social and economic problem.

I'd like to second this. I'm not xenophobic -- I support allowing a large number of legal immigrants into the country each year under fairly generous terms. I oppose all forms of ethnic quotas and other restrictive immigration policies. I support giving legal immigrants nearly full access to the benefits of citizenship as soon as they arrive and additional services (if they want) to help them in adjusting to a different country. Hopefully, this is enough to convince people that I'm not, by any stretch of the imagination, anti-immigrant.

On the other hand, I am a firm believer in the need to enforce the law with regards to illegal immigrants -- deport them and bar them from reentry. These positions aren't contradictory and, in fact, I see them as complementary -- by increasing legal immigration and throwing out all the illegal immigrants, we will be rewarding those honest people that follow the rules instead of those that decide that they have the right to break the law to get what they want. Those are the kind of people that we ought to be allowing to immigrate. The incentives in our current system are perversely the opposite of this -- it punishes those that want to follow the rules with onerous waits and arbitrary terms while rewarding those that skip in line with amnesty and "safe haven". It's ludicrous, and I blame both the GOP for stymieing legal immigration and the Dems for stymieing systematic attempts to identify and deport illegals and punish unscrupulous employers (only the really negligent, of course -- not every contractor that accepts a forged SSN deserves to get canned, but the ones that intentionally look the other way certainly do).

Such a partisan football is made out of what I thought was just common sense -- it's depressing really. I can't understand it -- I just can't. It's some sort of collective insanity we've entered in this country.

Re:Idiocy (1)

ushering05401 (1086795) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132653)

How about the contractors who accept forged SSNs and then proceed to duly withhold and file all payroll related taxes? My understanding is that this is the majority situation with regards to construction as opposed to agriculture related industries due to the insurance situation.

Long story short, your career as a contractor is over if something happens on a job and your insurance co finds a way out of paying - and provided you have a properly completed I-9 on file you are covered even if the employee involved is not actually legal.

For those who believe all these illegal immigrants are working under the table without paying taxes into the system, it just ain't so... Agriculture is the one industry that is supposedly utilizing fully undocumented workers. Everyone else is paying taxes (ie: all the fast food chains).

For regular people. (4, Interesting)

copponex (13876) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132473)

If a corporation is hurt by a policy, something will be done. If average workers are hurt by a policy, nothing will be done, until the problem can no longer be ignored. It's one of the downplayed societal ills, since illegal immigration has been supported by Republican and Democrat administrations.

Large companies love a huge illegal immigrant population. The state picks up their health and education bills, and the illegal workers accept lower wages that can be used to threaten other workers with.

Re:Idiocy (1, Interesting)

Penguinshit (591885) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132495)

Bzzzt.

Illegal immigrants comprise less than 5% of the US population. Taxes are withheld from the wages of the vast majority of them for services they'll never receive but are available to citizens (social security, etc.). Compare the $millions "lost" to these folks versus the $millions truly lost in prevention or detection schemes which fail to do anything but erode the privacy rights of citizens.

Re:Idiocy (1)

Skillet5151 (972916) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132641)

I'm gonna have to call bullshit on employers paying taxes for their illegal immigrant workers. Got a source?

Re:Idiocy (1)

EkriirkE (1075937) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132139)

Perhaps they meant emigrate?

Re:Idiocy (4, Insightful)

Stuart Gibson (544632) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132301)

I'm more interested in what they're going to do if I refuse? Throw me out of the country?

Re:Idiocy (2, Insightful)

Jurily (900488) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132305)

Why not just let them leave? And bar them when they try to come back.

Apparently, they already failed at that once. I don't understand this move, but once again it's clear that the US borders are not a privacy dream. Next up: state borders and continental air travel?

I'm so glad I'm not American.

Re:Idiocy (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132553)

So, what nation do you live in that allows ppl, including criminals, to come and go freely?

Re:Idiocy (1)

Xaositecte (897197) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132655)

this describes a good portion of the EU

Re:Idiocy (2, Insightful)

vux984 (928602) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132663)

So, what nation do you live in that allows ppl, including criminals, to come and go freely?

When the primary punishment for being an "illegal alien" is deportation, what exactly are you going to do when you catch them trying to leave? Make them leave?

Re:Idiocy (1)

Skillet5151 (972916) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132673)

Any signatory of the Schengen agreement?

Re:Idiocy (1)

terraformer (617565) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132317)

You need to know when they left after their last visit. So if an illegal visits in Jan 01 and again in Jan 09 after having left in Dec 08. You have no idea if they over stayed their visa on the first trip in order to block them the second time in unless you knew when they left. Also, how can this be about illegal immigrants if they are going to scan US citizens??? Can you say Police State? :-)

Re:Idiocy (4, Interesting)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132591)

First, we are still better than most nations, but we are certainly heading towards more of a police state similar what other nations have.

As to illegals, I have a sister-in-law who was once illegal. She was able to come and go pretty much at will, even though she was illegal. fake IDs (including passports) made all that TRIVIAL.

Re:Idiocy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132339)

Why not just let them leave? And bar them when they try to come back. What is the point of catching someone you don't want in the country when they are leaving it??

Because then you couldn't throw the disloyal ones into prison for the crime of trying to leave.

The East Germans were told that the Berlin Wall was put up to keep the impoverished victims of Capitalism from taking over the Glorious People's Paradise.

All of this has happened before, and it will all happen again.

One step at a time . . . (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132029)

You can see how they take little baby steps. One at a time. In ten years imagine what will be happening.

Re:One step at a time . . . (5, Funny)

vux984 (928602) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132051)

You can see how they take little baby steps. One at a time. In ten years imagine what will be happening.

Border lineups will be days long, and the government will be suing SAP for promising that it would work, based on a fraudulent tech demo that's gone missing?

Re:One step at a time . . . (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132109)

wooooooooooosh

Re:One step at a time . . . (1)

Zapotek (1032314) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132183)

wooooooooooosh!

Re:One step at a time . . . (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132585)

You can see how they take little baby steps. One at a time. In ten years imagine what will be happening.

Which reminds me of this quote:

How shall the new environment be programmed? It all happened so slowly that most men failed to realize that anything had happened at all.

SRT [imdb.com]

Re:One step at a time . . . (5, Insightful)

tsm_sf (545316) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132095)

You can see how they take little baby steps. One at a time. In ten years imagine what will be happening.

Weird to see a post from 1999 pop up randomly.

Re:One step at a time . . . (5, Insightful)

dov_0 (1438253) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132235)

In Soviet Russia, um. Well, actually it's getting pretty similar...

Re:One step at a time . . . (1)

rotide (1015173) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132343)

I started to laugh. Then began to realize how sad it is that it's true.

So... (1)

Steauengeglase (512315) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132055)

At this point the only people not recorded are child molesters living under bridges, oh, wait.

Barriers to leaving a country (5, Insightful)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132057)

All countries exercise at least some control over who can enter, but there's only one kind of country that erects barriers to who can leave. How long until you guys build a wall? Oh, apparently you've started already. [globalsecurity.org]

Re:Barriers to leaving a country (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132249)

You're fucking retarded. Your mother should have told you that more often.

Re:Barriers to leaving a country (5, Insightful)

nokiator (781573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132265)

Welcome to East Germany 2.0!

i totally agree with your sentiment (1, Offtopic)

ClintJCL (264898) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132271)

...But I have to ask, is it really true that we're the only one to erect barriers to who can leave? North Korea? China? Hello?

Re:i totally agree with your sentiment (5, Informative)

Chabo (880571) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132311)

In all fairness, he did say one kind of country, for which I think he meant "viciously authoritarian", or something similar.

Re:i totally agree with your sentiment (1)

amRadioHed (463061) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132405)

He said "one kind of country" not "one country".

Re:i totally agree with your sentiment (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132543)

China doesn't erect barriers to who can leave. It's a trivial process for a Chinese person to obtain a passport and purchase a ticket to some other country - the problem is obtaining a visa for the country you want to go to, which is nothing to do with China and everything to do with other countries not wanting to grant visas to Chinese citizens.

Exit Tax (2, Interesting)

copponex (13876) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132639)

http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/international/article/0,,id=97245,00.html [irs.gov]

To leave the country, you have to pay taxes for all of your assets, and renounce your US citizenship if you'd like to stop paying the IRS.

I'm actually in favor of regulations against capital flight, but this is probably going a little too far...

Re:Barriers to leaving a country (1)

netruner (588721) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132281)

What do you do with people who refuse to cooperate? My assumption must be that they are not allowed to leave. This is not compatible with the American idea of freedom.

Re:Barriers to leaving a country (2, Interesting)

spooje (582773) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132335)

Actually Japan does this all the time. If you're trying to leave and they found out you over stayed your visa they'll arrest, try and imprison you for the maximum amount of time then deport you. I had trouble leaving once because a government agency kept my foreigner card. I had to wait in custody about an hour, making the plane late before they decided to let me go.

Ya this is kinda scary (5, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132383)

Saying who can and can't enter is, well, part of being an nation. I would place it akin to an individual being able to decide who can and can't enter their home. Part of being a sovereign nation is you need to be able to decide who is allowed to come in.

However not being able to leave? Well again I'd say it is like a private individual and while you can tell me I can't come in to your house, once you've let me in you have to let me out when I want to go. Barriers for exit are things that are normally associated with extremely oppressive societies. The USSR had very strict border control and it was more to keep their populace in than to keep foreigners out. Thus I see this as a step down a very bad path.

It also raises some serious legal questions for people like me. I am a citizen of two nations, the US and Canada. I have a right to go to either nation. So is it legal for the US to say "No, you can't go to Canada,"? Who are they to tell me I can't go to my country?

Re:Ya this is kinda scary (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132481)

It also raises some serious legal questions for people like me. I am a citizen of two nations, the US and Canada. I have a right to go to either nation. So is it legal for the US to say "No, you can't go to Canada,"? Who are they to tell me I can't go to my country?

Strictly speaking, what they're talking about is not deciding where you can go, but deciding if you can leave at all (presumably, although that hasn't specifically been mentioned). In other words, it's not that they're saying "you can't go to Canada", what they're saying is "you can't leave the US". In reality, they're not saying that at all, all they're saying is that if you *do* leave, they're going to fingerprint you before you go, I don't think anyone's talking about not letting you leave. I would imagine that the punishment for refusing to submit to fingerprinting is that you won't be allowed to return, instead of denying you access to leave.

Re:Barriers to leaving a country (1)

schwanerhill (135840) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132391)

All countries exercise at least some control over who can enter, but there's only one kind of country that erects barriers to who can leave. How long until you guys build a wall? Oh, apparently you've started already.

Huh?

While I agree with the complaint and don't like much of anything about the changes to US Customs and Immigration procedures in the last 7-8 years, the US is one of relatively few countries that doesn't put all passengers through an exit customs and/or immigration check. In all the overseas airports I've flown out of in recent years (in Australia, Chile, the UK, and Spain), you pass through a customs check before entering the international departures area.

This check is pretty cursory, but it's only the US and Canada (in my relatively limited experience) that don't do it.

Re:Barriers to leaving a country (1)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132637)

But that one is not designed to keep ppl in. Anybody can illegally cross over into Mexico with little hassle, just a little walk in the desert. And you will NOT be stopped by American police. OTH, if you are picked up by Mexican police, you wish that you were in American prisons instead.

Sounds RACIST - instead only check (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132059)

Only check those with towels on the head. That's who we need to crack skulls on, them towle heads.

Re:Sounds RACIST - instead only check (1)

MacColossus (932054) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132573)

So followers of The Hitchhiker's Guide To the Galaxy shouldn't travel out of the country? Especially May 25th! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Towel_Day [wikipedia.org]

totalitarianism (3, Insightful)

u4ya (1248548) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132067)

it keeps creeping in, step by step, for as long as enough of us remain silent.

Re:totalitarianism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132279)

is it that bad ? a dictator like obama would be good for the country.
a dictator like bush would be bad. as long as enough of us vote a good
dictator into power it will be fine.

Re:totalitarianism (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132511)

is it that bad ? a dictator like obama would be good for the country.

      Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

allegedly hatched under the Bush Administration??? (-1, Flamebait)

Nutria (679911) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132073)

Obama's only been in office for 4 months and W for 8 years.

Who else could have come up with this plan?

Why? (5, Insightful)

sweatyboatman (457800) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132079)

"We are trying to ensure we know more about who came and who left," [Michael Hardin] said. "We have a large population of illegal immigrants in the United States - we want to make sure the person getting on the plane really is the person the records show to be leaving."

huh? so the epidemic of people pretending to leave the country on commercial flights by booking flights and sending doppelgangers in their place is finally over! rejoice Americans! we are all now super safe!

Re:Why? (4, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132517)

I think he is being honest, as weird as it sounds. Think about it, why was the DHS formed? Why does it seem so incompetent?

Originally Bush was opposed to it, but under congressional pressure relented and agreed to its creation. Ever since then it has done almost nothing except......export illegal immigrants. It does that a lot. So I am theorizing that Bush thought, "Fine. They can build the organization and call it whatever they want, but since I'm in charge, it will DO what I want." And what he wanted was to get rid of illegal immigrants. So that's what happened. Besides a few token operations to live up to its name, it focuses almost entirely on getting rid of illegal immigrants. Has nothing to do with security.

Won't work (5, Insightful)

royallthefourth (1564389) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132099)

None of the illegal immigrants I've ever met have arrived by airplane.

This leaves two options: either these guys are really stupid, or the real goal is different from the stated goal.

Re:Won't work (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132165)

None of the illegal immigrants I've ever met have arrived by airplane

Not necessarily. There may be people arriving legally on student or tourist visas, and then overstaying them (sometimes permanently).

Still, the way the justification was fomulated leads me to believe something was not said.

Re:Won't work (2, Insightful)

rubycodez (864176) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132475)

those visa people are ALREADY fingerprinted coming and going

They already have my fingerprints.... (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132105)

The thugs in government already mandated and received my fingerprints. They got them when I applied for the military and was 4-Fed (back problems), and when I applied for a medical license. In fact, it's mandated for a medical license now in most places. They take your fingerprints when you buy a gun. I mean, at this point, we're totally hosed. Welcome to the new police state.

Nothing to see here. Move on.

B frankin S (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132107)

Yeah this seems like a real efficient way to catch illegal immigrants, I'm sure most of the come to the U.S. to catch international flights from Atlanta and Detroit. That's how dumb the government knows the average person is.

Passport issue (1)

actionbastard (1206160) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132113)

How do you get a U.S. passport if you're an illegal alien? Do they not do their homework when they review applications? I mean, come on. Not only has the application fee gone sky high, but now as a U.S. citizen -with a valid passport- you must be subjected this indignity as well. Honestly!

Re:Passport issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132155)

It is fairly silly to be charged more than a nominal fee for a passport, but really, $75 for 10 years isn't very much.

Re:Passport issue (1)

actionbastard (1206160) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132239)

If you add the 'execution' fee -how appropriate- it's $100.00US.

Re:Passport issue (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132509)

If you add the 'execution' fee -how appropriate- it's $100.00US.

Just out of curiosity, how is that appropriate? Which US passport holders are being executed?

They arlready do this to non US residents (5, Informative)

Roy Ward (14216) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132193)

As someone who occasionally visits your country (with a New Zealand passport and valid work visa), I can tell you that all non-US citizens are already subject to this indignity, for no better reasons than you will be. It's unfortunately just the next step (I've never been fingerprinted going into any other country, or any other time at all for that matter).

Re:Passport issue (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132273)

No indignity is to big, or to small, for our loyal subjects - err, CITIZENS!

Re:Passport issue (1)

Dan667 (564390) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132291)

I wish I had mod points, this is so true. You cannot fly internationally without a passport so who exactly is this going to catch? Hopefully, it will be reversed as a huge waste of time and money.

How does exiting = immigrants? (1)

greymond (539980) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132149)

So how exactly does me LEAVING the country potentially flag me as an illegal immigrant?! Shouldn't you be scanning me as I ENTER the country?!

Re:How does exiting = immigrants? (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132555)

I'm not sure if you're aware of this, but typically illegal immigrants do not enter the country where there is a customs station to scan them.

Free (3, Insightful)

Longjmp (632577) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132167)

U.S. of A. the Land Of The Free. Sorry, just couldn't resist.

Re:Free (5, Insightful)

cptdondo (59460) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132207)

No shit. I was born under communism; I vividly recall the grade school lectures about leaving the country being a crime.

We left there to the land of the free. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would live to see the day when borders in formerly communist nations are no more and Americans must present the proper papers and fingerprints! to leave the country.

Now you know.. (3, Insightful)

msimm (580077) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132681)

we hated the USSR out of jealously. And now look at how swiftly we race to embrace statism.

I can't imagine (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132169)

why they would want to fingerprint those who are leaving, unless they eventually plan to fingerprint those who are arriving as well.

Re:I can't imagine (4, Funny)

Nefarious Wheel (628136) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132263)

Inspired by a superb role model, the US Department of the Interior wants to "index all the world's fingerprints". I mean, why stop at the border? Offer it as a free service that offers paper stars - enough paper stars and you get a pony. A free pony.

Re:I can't imagine (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132327)

They already fingerprint non-Americans entering your country.

you know what else gets your prints taken ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132201)

Punching a TSA in the face,
much more satisfying and i get the same treatment,
after all if you treat me like a criminal and take my prints (like i have been booked)
i might as well be one egh ?

No finger prints? (2, Funny)

bfmorgan (839462) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132219)

So if I have no hands?

Re:No finger prints? (1)

The Archon V2.0 (782634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132649)

So if I have no hands?

You'll be detained for hours while they figure out what to do with you. Because only terrorists don't share their fingerprints.

Honestly, what's the big deal? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132237)

So what if they want to fingerprint travelers? I think this is a good idea, since it can be used to catch those who may be trying to flee the country because they have warrants out, etc. Please tell me how this is an infringement on your 'rights'?

The DHS/ICE already do biometric scanning of all permanent residents when they're entering the country, and I mean fingerprinting all the fingers in both of your hands. People with US Passports, by comparison, are waived through, which I think is a incredibly stupid thing.

Besides, the EU has been doing this for quite some time [privacyinternational.org] . Get over it.

Re:Honestly, what's the big deal? (5, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132527)

"So what if they want to fingerprint travelers entering the country? I think this is a good idea"
"So what if they want to fingerprint travelers exiting the country? I think this is a good idea"
"So what if they want to fingerprint travelers changing flights at the country? I think this is a good idea"
"So what if they want to fingerprint travelers flying past the country? I think this is a good idea"
"So what if they want to fingerprint drivers? I think this is a good idea"
"So what if they want to fingerprint cyclists? I think this is a good idea"
"So what if they want to fingerprint pedestrians? I think this is a good idea"
"So what if they want to fingerprint everyone? I think this is a good idea"

It's called "unnecessary feature creep". Providing fingerprints at a border helps no more than providing other, non-biometric, information at the border, whether you've just murdered someone or not. Either you're on the database (and thus can be flagged in an instant by having an A.P.B. put out) or you're not. But unnecessary feature creep paves the way to a surveillance society. 50 years ago we didn't even *have* this technology, now it's being made compulsory if you want to fly, drive, cycle, ... and eventually it's just compulsory.

Plus, that data is *personal* under most country's definitions of personal data. In the EU that means it's subject to the Data Protection Act which means I have a legal assurance (whether it's carried out or not is another matter) that the data will be kept private, not be disclosed except for explicit purposes and that only authorised people will see it. The US does not, and never has, provided such guarantees to visitors (even if it intended to break them anyway once they were on paper)

"Please tell me how this is an infringement on your 'rights'?"

I have the right to pass freely through almost every port in the world without undue let or hindrance. The US just removed that. I also have the right to protect my personal information and to refuse to give biometric data if I so wish. That right was just lost. Just because in America you didn't HAVE those rights in the first place, that's no reason to not understand why other people are upset (and we are by definition talking about international travellers here).

"The DHS/ICE already do biometric scanning of all *permanent* residents when they're entering the country, and I mean fingerprinting all the fingers in both of your hands. People with US Passports, by comparison, are waived through, which I think is a incredibly stupid thing."

Yep. Because you've just scanned the fingerprints of someone that, by definition, you have zero record of anywhere else (because they are not a US citizen until that time). Yet you let known criminals walk through because they have a US passport. That's just STUPID. And another nail in the "we need this" coffin. It's an *unnecessary* measure.

"Besides, the EU has been doing this for quite some time. Get over it."

No they haven't. I am an EU citizen and have NEVER provided my fingerprints EVER for ANY purpose in ANY country - I even have a 10 year British passport, a 10-year British driving license (both with EU-certified RFID etc. in them) and never had to provide anything but an authenticated photo and documentation (for the next renewal in a decade's time it might be more tricky to avoid being fingerprinted if people don't stand up to this crap NOW) - and only last year I travelled through 10 countries in the EU within two weeks on a cruise ship. In fact, that's why I'm not flying to the US ever again - that and the "we need the right to copy your laptop data and not tell you what we did with it" - that's a KILLER for me, because it means I would be breaking the law in my own country by disclosing private, personalised business data.

You're throwing a right away every time you say "I don't see a problem with it, so okay". What you should be saying is "I don't see the need. So why should I?". Whether that right is documented or assumed, it'll creep away from you bit by bit until you don't have it any more. The UK want to introduce ID cards - first they were going to be optional, then you would have to pay for them, then they would have fingerprint data, then they were remotely-readable, then they were going to be used on immigrants, then they were going to be used for all airport workers, etc.etc.etc. Feature creep. Watch out for it. That's where 1984 is gonna come from.

To be fair... (1)

VinylRecords (1292374) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132251)

They are scanning them just to make sure they aren't shoplifting upon exiting.

What if you refuse? (5, Interesting)

jmv (93421) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132277)

When you come in to the US, they tell you that you don't have to comply with the checks, but that if you don't you can't enter. So what if you refuse to comply with that one? You can't leave?

Re:What if you refuse? They subdue you, then (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132583)

copy your fingerprints and then wake you up and ask you, "What is the last thing you remember?"

Maybe all this fingerprinting is to report to Core Control which humans are trying to reach the Mothership?

But, i did not read much that explicitly said that US CITIZENS will be scanned. Sure US-VISIT and biometric passports IMPLY that it will be US citizens, but this has got to be a real smokescreen.

Seriously, though, it is probably a way to index ALL the FUTURE foreign operatives, particularly those who are sent here as students by their respective governments, so the US can either keep tabs on foreign operatives who are rising stars, or to blackmail those whom the US considers fodder or disposable in the brinkmaship the governments play. Really, it is often difficult to trick an astute spy into giving up fingerprints, saliva samples and so on in a restaurant (except the careless ones who mix and mingle in DC and touch dinnerware that is carefully taken to the "kitchen" for scanning/imaging/databasing), compared to just going directly after ALL foreigners who come here for months on end and invariably will slip because it's hard for YOUNG trainees to be perfect ALL the time.

Just my two cents...

Re:What if you refuse? (3, Funny)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132595)

LOL I once met this guy from El Salvador who was in the US illegaly working. After a while, he got sick of it and wanted to go home. Around that time he saw some immigration officers walking down the street, and announced, "I am here illegaly! Send me home!" They laughed and told him to work and get his own ticket. So he gave up and did.

Re:What if you refuse? (1)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132613)

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that if you refuse this border check, you will *also* not be allowed to enter the US (once you leave, obviously). In other words, you can refuse, but you're no longer welcome in the US. Either that, or they will lock you up for however long the punishment is and then deport you, similar to what other countries (e.g. Japan) do when you try to leave without documentation.

As a Canadian... (1)

HtR (240250) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132287)

As a Canadian, I assume that if I don't comply with Homeland Security's request, I would be deported. But how?

Re:As a Canadian... (1)

ishobo (160209) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132505)

You will most likely be flagged and refused entry the next time.

Re:As a Canadian... (1)

Cassini2 (956052) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132659)

Getting deported for not volunteering your finger prints would be an interesting way to get a free trip out of the country.

In practice, I doubt they would let you back in, and you might need a lawyer to talk your way out of trouble. Somehow, I think the U.S. will find a way of making it a costly "free" trip.

What shoudl happen (3, Interesting)

EkriirkE (1075937) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132313)

I would love to see a backlash or movement for when this takes effect to have people install de-fingerprinting kiosks outside the airports... maybe offering a swipe of super glue before entry to the airport. If only a few people do this it wont work so well, but if masses do it...???

just cause it was hatched under bush ... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132333)

Where is your magic negro now ?

what a difference 10 years make (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132341)

You know, I'm a Canadian, and ten years ago, I would have voted to join the US. I felt that Americans recognised the value of their freedoms and that they had, and would fight to keep, a more free society than just about anywhere else on Earth. Today, I won't even travel there. It reminds me of all those B movies just after WW2 "Achtung! Show me your papers". How could y'all have just let this happen ?

Already existed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132345)

Don't they already do this for quite some time? There was a pilot program particularly in Chicago (and some other places) where upon exiting US you needed to head to a special kiosk (US-VISIT was the name, I believe) and scan your passport/visa and fingers.
Though that older system seems to have been discontinued on May 6th 2007, according to http://www.immihelp.com/visas/usvisit.html

maybe those who are complaining can explain: (5, Funny)

bagorange (1531625) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132361)

"Why do you hate America?"(TM) so much that you want to leave?

Re:maybe those who are complaining can explain: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132421)

Shh! They'll send you to jail!

Now youll know (4, Insightful)

alexborges (313924) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132429)

How it feeels.

Re:Now youll know (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28132497)

How it feeels.

I take it you're not a citizen of the U.S.

If this is the case, your opinion really doesn't matter, and you're not even a human being. Seriously, fuck you.

Can't wait for the first 'catch' (5, Funny)

superdave80 (1226592) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132465)

Brave Homeland Security Officer: Place your thumb here.
Traveler: Ok.
*Presses thumb to scanner*
Brave Homeland Security Officer: Ah-ha! This says that you are in this country illegally! I've got you now!
Traveler/Illegal immigrant: Sooooo... since I'm not allowed to be in this country, do you want me to get on my plane and leave, or what?
Brave Homeland Security Officer: Yes! And, um, never come back! That'll teach you!
Traveler/Illegal immigrant: Yes, this punishment of being delayed from my flight for 30 seconds has surely made me so uncomfortable that I won't ever sneak back into this country. You win.

Your Papers, Please (4, Interesting)

kylben (1008989) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132483)

it will be used in part to crack down on the US population of illegal immigrants."

The only way fingerprinting could possibly aid in tracking illegal immigrants is if it was used to track every single US citizen and legal alien. Then anyone caught on the street without their fingerprints in the system is by definition illegal. And even that is only useful if people are routinely fingerprinted on the street. I'm pretty sure there's a name for that kind of system.

The more likely use, down the road a (very short) way, is to make emigration illegal, or at least restricted. There's a name for places where that happens, too.

Everybody likes to talk about police states in the past tense, or in the abstract. Nobody expects the Spa... the real dictatorships. They aren't created all at once out of the blue, and they're seldom openly announced as such.

Alright! (1)

unreadepitaph (1537383) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132627)

Step 1: Fringerprint people leaving country
Step 2: ???????
Step 3: Profit

Maybe just don't fly from those airports? Either way it just makes it more off putting for backpackers to go to the states.

Tourism Fail?

Movie Idea (4, Funny)

arthurpaliden (939626) | more than 5 years ago | (#28132671)

In the early years of The War on Terror, the American city of Cincinnati attracts people from all over the United States. Many are transients trying to get out on the next plane to Canada or even Europe, a few are just trying to make a buck...Two DHS couriers have been killed and the letters of transit they were carrying have gone missing. These letters are blank and represent freedom for two, all the action centers around a cafe ....
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