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FBI To Spend $1B Expanding Fingerprint Database

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the lot-of-iris-scans dept.

Privacy 159

mytrip and other readers alerted us to news that the FBI is about to announce the awarding of a $1B, 10-year contract to expand its fingerprint database to incorporate other biometrics — palm prints, iris scans, scars, tattoos, possibly facial shape — "Whatever the biometric that comes down the road, we need to be able to plug that in and play," an FBI spokesman is quoted. Barry Steinhardt of the ACLU sounded the cautionary note: "This had started out being a program to track or identify criminals. Now we're talking about large swaths of the population — workers, volunteers in youth programs. Eventually, it's going to be everybody."

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159 comments

Keep your eye out for... (-1, Offtopic)

AlphaDrake (1104357) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304724)

Does this mean they are going to come out with bigger coins? I mean, if you ever held a penny, the government has your fingerprints, thats why they keep them in circulation... End communication

Re:Keep your eye out for... (2, Insightful)

Asic Eng (193332) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304746)

if you ever held a penny, the government has your fingerprints

A collection of fingerprints doesn't strike me as particularly valuable. Now if you had a collection of fingerprints associated with people's names, that would be something interesting. Even if you found a way to record the name of the last person who held a penny before it returned to the bank - what exactly is so interesting about supermarket cashiers?

Re:Keep your eye out for... (2, Insightful)

kaos07 (1113443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304754)

what exactly is so interesting about supermarket cashiers?

They're disgruntled and poorly paid! The more likely to become revolutionaries...

Re:Keep your eye out for... (1, Funny)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305048)

Shopworkers of the world unite. You have nothing to lose but your change.

Just keep giving them to mythbusters (1)

sherms (15634) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305394)

I'm sorry, I thought it was funny when they beat the cheap fingerprint biometric. Yes they started small. But I'd like to see them get into some more hacking. They can do it on TV and get away with it. If I where to have shown my last boss how to beat it. I would have been fired (of course thats when I worked for government). Even at my current work, the mentality of the people over IT is such that they told me "Don't even touch how we do back up, it's whats supported!" I can't wait to send them an email showing their backup has not worked since June..

"I live in a country thats free. Free to be as stupid as you want!"

Sherm

Re:Keep your eye out for... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22306068)

what exactly is so interesting about supermarket cashiers?
Some of them are quite hot.

Re:Keep your eye out for... (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304752)

Does this mean they are going to come out with bigger coins? I mean, if you ever held a penny, the government has your fingerprints, thats why they keep them in circulation... End communication

Gotta compete with those Canadian spy coins [msn.com] .

Re:Keep your eye out for... (1)

gbobeck (926553) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304764)

Gotta compete with those Canadian spy coins.


Ya know, ya gotta love that loonie Canadian currency

Re:Keep your eye out for... (2, Funny)

Loibisch (964797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304992)

Yeah, also make sure you do not touch your tinfoil hat without wearing leather gloves, else they'll be reading your fingerprints off it using their invisible mind rays.

Re:Keep your eye out for... (3, Funny)

pipatron (966506) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305102)

It saddens me to hear that you are not using MindGuard [zapatopi.net] . Using only a tinfoil hat does not offer full protection!

Superbad, anyone? (4, Funny)

kaos07 (1113443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304744)

Why bother with scars and tattoos? What we really is a National Semen Database just in case the criminal ejaculates all over the scene of the crime. The FBI could even use sperm banks as a front!

Re:Superbad, anyone? (3, Funny)

blindd0t (855876) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304898)

What we really is a National Semen Database just in case the criminal ejaculates all over the scene of the crime.

Nah, what they really need to do is have the ability to identify people by their genitals. See, by doing so, you could be forced to identify yourself in public, thus making you a sex offender, and thus voiding any human rights you had left. Of course, I'm just making random crap up, obviously, but I really feel their intentions are just as absurd.

Re:Superbad, anyone? (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304948)

Oh, the wonderful minds of slashdot.

My first thought upon reading the article (yes, the title and the mandatory one more line) was "Big brother requires you to update your genital identification card yearly. When did you submit your last color picture?".

And there it is, in less than twenty posts my thread becomes obsolete before it's conception.

great idea (2, Insightful)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305374)

Absolutelly wonderful, this will work perfectly.

After all, Terrorists are well known for co-operating fully with the authorities in providing their biometric data.

Oh wait....

It indicates (3, Interesting)

WindBourne (631190) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305368)

that they have had better luck with cameras than was thought possible.
Overall, a simple tattoo can be described. But if they are electing to keep the biometrics that they are keeping, it would say that they will be making heavier use of cameras. My guess is that we will see a new law proposed (and probably passed since the dems are as yellow-liver as the pubs are corrupt) that allows the feds access to ALL streaming camera (banks, grocery stores, streets, stop lights, toll bothes, etc) 100% of the time. Patriot allowed access only when chasing a terrorist, but this next bill will say that all businesses must give 100% access no matter what.

Re:Superbad, anyone? (1)

Ngarrang (1023425) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305754)

Why bother with scars and tattoos? What we really is a National Semen Database just in case the criminal ejaculates all over the scene of the crime. The FBI could even use sperm banks as a front!
Nope, that is what the blood banks are for. Oops, is that a knock I am hearing at my door?

My two cents... (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22304748)

Wouldn't it be easier to just tattoo everyone with a number? Then anyone who is caught doing something "wrong" can be incarcerating in reeducation camps? Wouldn't this be a lot easier to do than to try getting everyone's biometrics over a long course of time? I mean, didn't Hitler have the idea down right, although it started out with only one section of society, and not everyone?

Re:My two cents... (4, Insightful)

Asic Eng (193332) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304758)

Wouldn't it be easier to just tattoo everyone with a number?

Not really - they wouldn't leave traces of the tattoo around.

Re:My two cents... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305792)

But they would leave traces of the shape of their face or scars (etc)?

Re:My two cents... (1)

ultranova (717540) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306210)

Don't be ridiculous. This is the information age. Subdermal RFIDs are far more efficient than tattooed numbers. Harder to remove, too, if you implant them deep enough.

Re:My two cents... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22306226)

When I was about 11 years old I vividly remembering seeing, for the first time, "the tattoo" of a woman who survived the Holocaust of WWII. Considering tattoos are not kosher (Deuteronomy 14:1-2) it added insult to an already unspeakable act. Years later even as a sailor in the military (and nonbeliever in the whole "Ceiling Cat" thing) I still wouldn't get a tattoo. It carried and still carries that much weight.

BTW, I believe the parent's comment is both satire and a possible "logical" step of the FBI program. Just switch tattoo for a RFID'd Driver's License and requirement to swipe it to buy food & fuel. (You know to protect us from "those that attack us because they hate our freedom.")

The once great United States of America is dying because our freedoms are quickly dying. Friedman's "Capitalism and Freedom" said it all: both are needed for a successful society, not just one or the other.

The Mafia wants this (4, Interesting)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304760)

The criminal fraternity must be ready to pay a fortune for this!

Expect the entire database to be for sale world-wide in weeks.

And buy some EDS shares NOW.

Re:The Mafia wants this (2, Funny)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305146)

Sale? Maybe on the black market! If I'm going to have to get it illegally, I'll just wait the extra week to download the handi-cam version from TPB.

How about Senators? (1)

Valacosa (863657) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304784)

It'd help the FBI keep track of those illicit sex acts [wikipedia.org] .

Re:How about Senators? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305338)

Big fish will always use secrecy, national security, as excuse not to be tracked like the rest of us. As long as there are some external enemies, competing countries, terrorists (it will forever be the case) they are "more equal than the others".

creators commit unlimited resources to rescue us (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22304794)

talk about being ungrateful? let yOUR conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

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http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080108/ts_alt_afp/ushealthfrancemortality;_ylt=A9G_RngbRIVHsYAAfCas0NUE [yahoo.com]
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/31/opinion/31mon1.html?em&ex=1199336400&en=c4b5414371631707&ei=5087%0A [nytimes.com]

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

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dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);

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the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

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"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

meanwhile, the life0cidal philistines continue on their path of death, debt, & disruption for most of US. gov. bush denies health care for the little ones;

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whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;

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& pretending that it isn't happening here;

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all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

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biometrics is the future (4, Informative)

noremorse10 (1233492) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304824)

The FBI will be awarding the 10 year, 1 billion dollar contract in the next few days to one of the large system integrators: IBM, Lockheed or Northrop. But within the next 6 months the biometric portion will be awarded for running the fingerprint database. The favorite is Cogent Systems (COGT) a leader in the biometric space. They run the biometric database for the US_VISIT program and other large scale fingerprint biometric identification systems around the world. See video about them http://www.cogentsystems.com/video.asp [cogentsystems.com]

If only... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22304862)

there was a Presidential Candidate willing to protect our privacy and civil liberties. Oh well... maybe 2012. Wait, what, there is? And you say he's attracted the largest grassroots campaign in the history of American politics? Damn.

If you've done nothing wrong (5, Insightful)

yada21 (1042762) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304956)

If you've done nothing wrong ,you have nothing to fear. Just so long as they don't redifine what's wrong, with retro-active effect.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (4, Insightful)

Loibisch (964797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22304978)

If you've done nothing wrong ,you have nothing to fear. Just so long as they don't redifine what's wrong, with retro-active effect.
And as long as there is no mixup in any of their databases making you a suspect for something you never did. I'm more in fear of incompetence at the government level than I am about malice.

Of course the other agenda ... (2, Insightful)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305084)

Of course the other agenda they have been working on is to ensure that everyone has done something wrong. Let someone borrow a DVD? Watched a match in a church hall on a big screen? Sorted out a neighbour's computer, and his wife gives you some cakes in return ... and neither of you declare the payment in kind on your tax return.

They can always find some excuse to bring you in if they look hard enough.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (4, Interesting)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305090)

as long as there is no mixup in any of their databases making you a suspect for something you never did.
Since when do people ever make mistakes? Sheesh.

For the record, I do not live in Oakland, nor have I ever lived in Oakland, nor do I know exactly where Oakland is except that it's somewhere in the Bay Area that I haven't been since I was a child. And no matter how many times I tell the TSA guys that on my way into the United States, they continue to ask me every time.

But hey! Having people look through my underwear because they think I'm someone else makes me feel so safe!

small scale malice is the big issue (4, Insightful)

ex-geek (847495) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305148)

And as long as there is no mixup in any of their databases making you a suspect for something you never did. I'm more in fear of incompetence at the government level than I am about malice.

You were probably only considering conspiracy theory type malice. But what you really have to be afraid of, is your neighbour Frank, the cop, who is jealous of your wife and would like to have you out of the way.
Lots of governement employees will have access rights to such a huge database. Human nature tells us that some of them will abuse the system.

Re:small scale malice is the big issue (2, Interesting)

Loibisch (964797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305336)

Yes, you are completely right of course, I was thinking about conspiracy-style malice.
I agree that giving "cop-anybody" rights to huge amounts of personal information is probably a bad idea.

However I still am more in fear of incompetence and negligence. Take for example all the recent data leaks that were uncovered within the British government.
In addition our minister of justice here in Germany had two Laptops stolen from her apartment recently...of course none of which contained any classified or otherwise important data (riiiiiiight...). The level of incompetence she's continuously displaying regarding technical questions you can bet your ass and property that everything on those machines was unencrypted and she'd do hell to admit it.

Once incompetence has reached such a high level it's hard not to be afraid of all this excessive data mining.

Re:small scale malice is the big issue (1)

MollyB (162595) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305392)

>But what you really have to be afraid of [...]

Looking down the road, I see this as small scale malice at first, but when there exists an all-inclusive DNA/ID database, it will be inevitable before someone gets the brilliant notion that no one owns their DNA, but borrows it from society's gene pool. This will bring about well-intentioned (or not) havoc in who decides what DNA is "beneficial" or better off culled? I'll be pushing up daisies long before that, thank Gaia...

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (4, Interesting)

blindd0t (855876) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305088)

If you've done nothing wrong ,you have nothing to fear. Just so long as they don't redifine what's wrong, with retro-active effect.

Though I expect that was posted with the sole intent of stirring up some muddy water, that sort of mind-set is clearly dangerous. The problem here is that we're continuously loosing more and more of our rights which protect us from our government. A false identification of an average citizen or legitimate businessman visiting from another country who happens to closely resemble a terrorist, but actually isn't the real-deal, could lead to false imprisonment for years if not a life-time, and without habeas corpus (because they may not necessarily acknowledge your claimed citizenship is valid), there is no stopping them. Honest citizens do have something to be horribly upset about: being treated like a potential terrorist and having every aspect of ourselves and our belongings intruded upon for a false sense of security.

I'm even going to throw in the good old car analogy too. I happen to still have my old Honda Civic from high school. When I got it (the price was right, so I took what I could get at the time), it had the crappy fart-pipe on it, and it had some shiny designer rims. I ripped the fart-pipe off, but I didn't see any point in removing the rims since even plain steel rims can be relatively costly. When I drive that car, the police see a young Spanish guy in a Honda Civic with after-market rims, and typically follow me for a while, sometimes even until I'm out of their jurisdiction (I cross counties on my way too and from work every day). When I drive my other car, which is a plain Ford Focus, police never pay any mind to me what-so-ever. They clearly profile, no matter how much they try to deny it. If they ran my plate, they'd see I'm 100% clean, so why continue to follow me until I hit the county line only when I'm driving *that* car? The car gets good gas mileage, so there is still good value to driving it rather than selling it, and it's nice to have it as a spare if my primary car has to hit the shop. Still, I sometimes wonder what these guys are thinking. Do they really think I'm some sort of threat? Do they feel I'm doing something retarded like running drugs? Who knows? What I know is that I really loathe being profiled like that every time I drive that car, as I'm a honest citizen who has done nothing wrong. So am I afraid? Not no, but hell no. Am I pissed off, oh hell yes. Don't doubt for a moment that the same thing won't happen when they're eventually watching every step you make, as opposed to periodically patrolling around in a car. You should be pissed off too.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1)

h4rm0ny (722443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305616)


They may not be following you in the expectation that you'd actually be stupid enough to do something, but for the purpose of intimidation - letting you know that they're there and they're in charge. They see you (wrongly) as someone to be controlled.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305224)

Of course, with such a huge database, many people will have access to it. How many of those people will be inclined to use it for something other than work purposes? Like, checking up on their spouse, neighbour or doing a friend a favour and check on the teacher of one of his kids? How do they keep track which access is part of a routine investigation and what is just "perks"? That is what people tend to forget, information like this tends to get abused and the more there is, the bigger the chance something is going to happen. Never mind the hassle if some information is entered incorrectly or someone steals your identity and suddenly you're confused with someone else. Even if you haven't done anything wrong, your privacy is still at risk.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1)

dtml-try MyNick (453562) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305238)

If you've done nothing wrong ,you have nothing to fear. Just so long as they don't redifine what's wrong, with retro-active effect
This argument is so old and dull.

That still doesn't have to mean everyone has to know everything about me. My life is my business and no one elses. Other then that, since when do humans make no mistakes and mix ups?

Besides, if you really don't have anything to hide I pity you for your very boring life.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305678)

I think you need to fix your irony detector. But I might be wrong.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (2, Informative)

JasterBobaMereel (1102861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305370)

Because of course fingerprinting always matches 100% and is utterly reliable and no-one has the same fingerprints ?

Fingerprint identification is a human (computer assisted) task that people learn how to do, get better at but are never 100% accurate at (especially in marginal cases) The fingerprints used are quite often partial and the chance of error can be magnified greatly ...

DNA "fingerprinting" however is not normally subject to human error but is still quoted (correctly) as error value (e.g. the chance of two people matching this DNA sample is 1:10000000)

If you use fingerprints on suspects it works fairly reliably (there are mistakes made) if you trawl a database to find suspects the errors will increase exponentially

Most DNA fingerprints are quoted as 1 in million to 1 in billion ... which means it will match 6-7 people on earth ...?

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1)

Melbourne Pete (1204418) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305626)

DNA "fingerprinting" however is not normally subject to human error
Tell that to the rape victim (Victoria, Australia) who had the police knock on her door one day because her DNA was found on a murdered kids clothing. As it turned out, she had nothing to do with the crime. The guys at the forensics lab must have had her DNA sample stored in the same used pizza box that they kept the murder victim's clothes in. If humans are involved it's subject to human error.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1)

JasterBobaMereel (1102861) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305932)

That's why I said "not normally" if someone contaminates the evidence then all bets are off

DNA samples can be contaminated, mis-filed, deliberately mis-itendified etc .. just like any other evidence

It's just the process of matching is now purely mechanical ... and even then it has (extremely small) errors so how can fingerprints always match 100% ...?

The published rates of mis-match (fingerprints did not match but system said they did) is 1% or in other words according to the Governments own figures a fingerprint at a crime scene will match (on average) 3,033,000 people in the USA with current techniques ...

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1)

mdwh2 (535323) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306328)

Indeed - and on the topic of reliability, I couldn't noticing when the parents of Madeline McCann were suspects, the media had experts crawling out of the woodwork to tell us how the DNA match they found in the car might have had another explanation.

Yet every other story the media tells about DNA matches being used to convict terrorists and sex offenders, all we hear is how it's a one in billions match. I bet if it was "some mysterious dodgy man" who was under suspicion rather than the parents, we wouldn't have had the media dismissing the evidence...

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1)

bhmit1 (2270) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305630)

I often wonder what it was like when government agencies actually served the people and not the other way around.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (2, Interesting)

kabocox (199019) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305914)

If you've done nothing wrong ,you have nothing to fear. Just so long as they don't redifine what's wrong, with retro-active effect.

If you are a modern peasant/corporate work and not a rich/modern noble with resources, of course you have something to fear. History teaches us to be fearful and paranoid because governments can radically change their minds within 2-3 generations. You aren't nearly as safe as you think you are.

Re:If you've done nothing wrong (1)

n3tcat (664243) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305930)

Let me ask you: Are you watching the road better when you're in normal traffic, or when a cop is right next to you?

Is it useful? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22304964)

There are numerous way around these methods of identification:

palm prints - can be removed in an acid bath and can be faked with latex or surgical silicone. Even systems that incorporate a variation on live finger detection can be fooled.

iris scans - Can be changed through the use of contact lenses.

Scars - a difficult one, but plastic surgury, make-up and latex can make them vanish or even create temporary ones.

Tattoos - Laser surgury can remove them, they can also be altered beyond recognition by professionals.

Possibly facial shape - can be altered through a variety of techniques

Sure, it would identify the average US citizen, but it would be useless against organised crime and terrorism.

Re:Is it useful? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305234)

Useful? We're talking about one billion dollars. Why don't you ask the primary beneficiaries of that huge pile of tax money? Start with those who control the business of government -- the power elite who tell you how to spend your money -- and then move on to their associates in the "private" sector.

I'm sure you won't have any problem at all finding an explanation.

Re:Is it useful? (2, Informative)

ad454 (325846) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305264)

Here in Japan, if you are not a Japanese citizen, then you will be fingerprinted when you enter immigration at any port of entry.

Even if you try to refuse and try to leave immigration to depart Japan, the Japanese authorities will forceable fingerprint you, and then likely throw you in jail before deporting you. The Japanese authorities will also throw you in jail if you do anything with your fingerprints, such as dyes, acid, or pineapple juice, or tamper with the fingerprint readers. Unless all of your finger tips are heavily and permanently scarred, you will be fingerprinted and incarcerated until they grow back. So your choice is either to submit willingly and be fingerprinted or object and suffer incarceration (including beatings/torture by authorities) and still be fingerprinted.

The really bad thing here, is that the corrupt Japanese government awarded the contract to collect the "foreigner" biometric data to the corrupt criminal organization Accenture (renamed Arthur Andersen) which did the falsified books for Enron and Worldcom. Accenture won the bid to collect the data for only (JPY)$100,000, approximately (USD)$900. You can bet that the Accenture paid the Japanese government a lot of money under the table in order to resell the biometric data to interested parties.

I would not be surprised if US authorities, and other countries as well, will do the same thing to force their own citizens as well as foreigners, to submit to fingerprinting and other biometric collection. And that sooner or later, you will not be able to opt out. I wonder if Accenture is also maintaining the new FBI biometric database.

Welcome to the new world order.

Re:Is it useful? (1)

dintech (998802) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305824)

I'm British and got fingerprinted going into the US a couple of years ago. I'm going to Japan in a couple of weeks. To be honest, I'm more woried about what the US goverment will do with my fingerprints than the Japanese/Outsourcers.

Re:Is it useful? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22306242)

What the hell? I've been to Japan on multiple occasions, I even lived there, and I have never been fingerprinted. Beatings? Torture? Can somebody else maybe confirm this or are you just, you know, talking crap?

They do indeed treat Chinese immigrants different from others, but even then.. I doubt it's that bad. But hey, maybe somebody with actual experience in the matter can say something that actually matters.

MISINFORMATION (2, Informative)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306436)

To say Accenture is a corrupt criminal organization is a little out of line. They are a multi-billion dollar international consulting agency, not the mob or Yakuza (not to say they don't have connections, but then, when you're that big who doesn't). And I don't think Accenture has any part in the FBI biometric database.

Although I am always cynical about Wikipedia entries and who really edits them:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Accenture [wikipedia.org]

Also, the US already fingerprints all incoming foreigners. Japan only adopted it recently because of US pressure. I am pretty sure the Japanese government follows the US constitution better than the US right now.

Re:Is it useful? (1)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305682)

I've often wondered if you could get Charles Manson's prints somewhere, like an old wanted poster. Create some fake prints, like that deal with gummi bears or whatever... make sure to have nice potato chip grease on them to leave good prints, and leave them around the scene of your crime.

Re:Is it useful? (2, Insightful)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305774)

Sure, it would identify the average US citizen, but it would be useless against organised crime and terrorism.
Let me make this perfectly clear: TERRORISTS ARE NOT BOND VILLAINS.

They don't have massive teams of plastic surgeons standing by to modify the appearances of their operatives. What would the point be, especially when the attacks often result in the death of the attacker, and they have hordes of disillusioned youth with no criminal history.

There are no laser cannons, nor are there secret underground bunkers. 9/11 was carried out using nothing but box-cutters. At that rate, prevention is quite a bit more important than catching the perpetrators after the attack takes place (if the attacker even survives at all).

I'm sorry, but this system is going to do nothing to prevent terrorism. It might help catch repeat sex-offenders, but from what I hear, the biometric data from convicted offenders is already collected and stored.

Re:Is it useful? (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306420)

9/11 was carried out using nothing but box-cutters.
We've all heard the conspiracy stories about how it was the CIA/teh joooooz that really did it. Now I've thought about it for a while and here's what I figured:

If it had been the CIA, there'd have been a trail of evidence linking it to them. Those guys are not rocket scientists. Heck, NASA barely are these days.

Likewise if mossad had done it, there'd also be a trail that a cokehead with a cold could follow right to the CIA's doorstep.

So, by a process of elimination, it really must have been 'Al-Qaeda'.

Re:Is it useful? (1)

kabocox (199019) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306150)

There are numerous way around these methods of identification: ...
Sure, it would identify the average US citizen, but it would be useless against organised crime and terrorism.


There are days I wonder what life would be like under real time census. It's my idea of the government collecting the long form census stats in real time for everyone in the US. I think that we could do it now. We could barcode/tag/ID all our money/products where the government and businesses could trivially track the paths of our entire money supply and those products that carry a next generation UPC. Think of a UPC that has a model number, serial, number, price, maker info, long description and other stats related to the product all embedded into the UPC and the entire thing is tracked by businesses and the the government. They'd reissue the money supply to make it trivial for point of sale cashiers to scan in the barcode/ID of the money and they'd know from which bank that money was issued, who it was issued to, and what it was used to purchase.

Trust me, it wouldn't be "useless" against either organized crime or terrorism, but not how folk traditionally think. You can't just make up or change your IDs if the system is actively tracking everything. Plus in some cases it wouldn't matter. If the government tracked the cash, it wouldn't matter if the guy that picked it up from the bank was hiding their ID. Sure there are some ways around it. The first that comes to mind is to grab a few honest folks and use them to take out your cash or for them to take out their cash and swap your hot money supply. It wouldn't help for long. The honest guy could spend his cash on the mortage, mcdonalds, and walmart and the government would know where the money came from. They aren't looking for the honest guy at first, but they'll find those honest people as soon as they use money that they the government was tracking that passed into illegal channels or as soon as money pops up from illegal channels and the last known holder of the cash was the honest guy.

When the secret service/FBI/or other government guys come knocking at the door, most honest people would tell them everything even without a warrant. If they were afraid of the illegal guys, the government types would pickup on that and keep a watch out if the illegal folks tried to use this guy anymore.

I think that it'd be much easier for the government/businesses to collect all that tracking information than for them to actually use it though. But they'd not throw any of it away and as long as they had a single purchase that they could track, they could find out who obtained the money from the bank and what they've spent their money on. Trust me, their would be a division of the government looking for those that try to outfox their system. They'll know how it is done, but it wouldn't matter as long as they've been tracking everyone else well enough. Problem is too much data. But you know they'd build a machine to query it in a useful amount of time.

Look into scanner with remaining eye (3, Funny)

Nomen Publicus (1150725) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305062)

Few criminals leave their eyes at the scene of a crime. So, why are iris scans needed if you already have fingerprints?

Re:Look into scanner with remaining eye (2)

edittard (805475) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305188)

So, why are iris scans needed if you already have fingerprints?
If someone pokes you in the eye, you could diff them and find out who did it.

Re:Look into scanner with remaining eye (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305636)

security cameras?

Waste of taxpayers money and absolutely absurd (2, Insightful)

dj42 (765300) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305080)

I don't care what other people do peacefully. Our laws encourage illegal behavior, and we facilitate violence by patrolling non-violent and non-criminal offenses. It is our fault that we drive people to violent behavior in many, if not all cases. The idea that we can allow the government to track us by DNA, fingerprints, sperm count, whatever, is simply absurd. It is absolutely NONE OF THE FENDER GOVERNMENT'S BUSINESS. The FBI does not deserve, nor warrant, any of this information from American citizens. In fact, we should slash their budget by at least 50% for at least 5-10 years to remind them who is in charge. Where do they get off thinking they can waste tax payer money on something so stupid?

Re:Waste of taxpayers money and absolutely absurd (1)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305312)

Where do they get off thinking they can waste tax payer money on something so stupid?
Only one candidate and an astonishingly small percentage of the population agree with you (and me).

Big Brother Obama/McCain/Romney or Big Sister Hillary! have different plans.

Re:Waste of taxpayers money and absolutely absurd (1)

dj42 (765300) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305356)

I'm a libertarian, and I assume, by that virtue, you imply you support Ron Paul. I'm not worried about the PRESIDENT being libertarian. What I want is a libertarian congress and senate. Do you realize that if we had the power to overturn useless regulation, wasteful irrelevant government projects, etc in the house and senate, and simultaneous, had the courage to KEEP THE EXECUTIVE OFFICE IN CHECK that the fact the president was democratic, republic, or otherwise wouldn't matter. We have no reason to be concerned with the political party or views of the president, at least not to such a vast degree socially and fiscally, when we have the house and senate under control of the PEOPLE and not the lobbyists, whores, and unintelligent.

congree and senate (meant to say house and senate) (1)

dj42 (765300) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305384)

Sorry, been drinking too much and am far too upset about bipartisan, ignorant politics. I mean to say, "house and senate" not "congress and senate", since obviously the legislative branch (i.e. congress) is composed of both. I don't want people to run amok and assume I don't know the difference while I'm at least a semi-strict Constitutionalist. Microsoft Word doesn't even recognize "constitutionalist" as a word... hah!

Re:congree and senate (meant to say house and sena (1)

dj42 (765300) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305396)

congree? for fuck sucks and this laptop keyboard. nevermind. I'm just going to leave this thread and let your god damn statists battle it out.

THIS IS YOU, WHEN YOU VOTE MAINSTREAM:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Statism [wikipedia.org]

Privacy issues... (1, Interesting)

werewolf1031 (869837) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305108)

...not withstanding, let's look at this from a somewhat calmer perspective. If I'm accused of a crime I didn't commit, and the FBI etc. have access to extensive biometric data beyond mere fingerprints, that info will only solidify my defense all the more. No one set of identifying data is foolproof, but the more convergent sets you have, the greater the likelihood of making a confirming positive (or negative) identification.

Also, the more data investigators have available to compare to mine in my hypothetical example, the less likelihood I'll even have charges brought against me to begin with; they'll know it wasn't me even before it gets to that point, and I'm one more suspect scratched off their list. Frankly, the prospect of NOT having my name dragged through the mud in a jury trial to prove my innocence (which can itself easily ruin lives) is more important to me personally than being "invisible" to the FBI by not being in their database at all. YMMV of course, and reasonably so -- this is just my opinion on the matter.

Think some more (4, Interesting)

Nursie (632944) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305258)

It's not about being invisible, it's about human nature.

The database will be -

1. Imperfect
2. Abused by government employees
3. Illegally accessed and sold on for profit

1 means you'd get your name dragged through the muck anyway and have LESS chance of getting off, even if you didn't commit the crime.

2 that some people will get stalked by crazy ex spouses/lovers/stalkers/whatever. There will also be cases of it facilitating some petty authoritarian's revenge schemes

3 is a big hello to massive identity theft.

Re:Think some more (1)

dave420 (699308) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305814)

So the main problems are not with the database, but by the government. In an ideal world, this database would be nothing but goodness for every citizen - the guilty are found quickly, and the innocent exonerated. What's stopping that is the government. Maybe that needs fixing, then we can use all this great stuff without being scared. It's kind of like the reasoning "the Police have been corrupt, so let's get rid of them". You cut loose some corruption, but at a great cost to the safety of the people as a whole. And this is not some Ron Paul bullshit I'm spouting, just logic.

One step further. (1)

Nursie (632944) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306350)

Not government, humans. The problem is humans.

Humans will be responsible for how correct the data is.
Humans will be responsible for using the data responsibly.
Humans will be responsible for using the data honestly.

I don't think it's possible to work around that.
With the amount of power the database represents, and the already mentioned downsides, I don't trust ANY humans with that job.

Re:Privacy issues... (1)

dj42 (765300) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305406)

This is why rational people do not believe the Federal government has any business handling these things, nor wasting taxpayer dollars on them.

Re:Privacy issues... (1)

dj42 (765300) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305460)

Sorry, I suppose I should clarify. Can you not appreciate that $1,000,000,000.00 USD could go toward something more useful? Do you really think the FBI deserves a fingerprint database worth nearly $3-4 for every MAN, WOMAN, CHILD, and BABY in the ENTIRE U.S.A derived from TAXES? I really, honestly, and truly believe the violation of privacy, unconstitutionality nature, and irrelevance of the program isn't even worth $0.000001 / person in the U.S.A. But maybe I don't think we could collect $10 from every taxpayer for fucking finger print wizardry that might identify a few criminals at the FEDERAL LEVEL. This is none of the federal government's business. Let's not forget it is IMPORTANT to recognize the details between what you believe is right and wrong, and what you think the federal government ought to be paying for with federal money. I don't think it is right when people feed their babies coca-cola and apple juice (too much sugar)m but do I think we should collect $20 from every tax payer in the U.S.A to start a program to stop it? FUCK NO!

Re:Privacy issues... (1)

sskinnider (1069312) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305666)

You are of course assuming that you and your defense team will have unrestricted access to the same assets that the FBI has and that they are willing to go "the extra mile" to help clear your good name. Unfortunately for you, law enforcement in general has not set so much precedent in the past by helping anyone accused get off.

Re:Privacy issues... (1)

anexium (591672) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305670)

so you'd rather be in the position of having to prove yourself innocent then have them prove your guilt?

Re:Privacy issues... (1)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305764)

It's nice to be talking to a millionaire.

Oh wait, you're not? Then you misunderstand the system. THIS is how it works:

* The biometric data is not an exact match. The prosecutor doesn;t know this because the cops haven't informed him because they don't see it as important, or are covering their asses. OR the prosecutor DOES know but doesn't care because he knows in his heart you're his guilty party, OR doesn't care because he knows its an easy conviction and he's not about with screw up his record, OR doesn't care because he know you'll never find out, because they aren't going to tell you.

You never find out because unlike TV, you don't have your own investigative staff to go over everything with a fine-toothed comb and your own experts on biometric data. You have a court-appointed attorney, or at best an average attorney - the best you could afford after mortgaging your house. Your attorney barely has the resources and time to file the proper paperwork to give you a decent defense, let alone investigate matters.

So, as always happens, you are offered a plea bargain. Even though he knows you're innocent, your attorney advises you to take it. You do, and you're somewhat fucked, or you DON'T and you get convicted and truly fucked.

With some luck, you might get off, but only with luck. And the darker your skin, the less lucky you are.

Cool... (2)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305120)

Just hook up their database to all the CCTV/webcams people leave open/public/unsecured and run the two programs they came out with in the last year that can read fingerprints and irises from ~10 feet away. Patch in the program that they're working on that is supposed to detect abnormal behavior based on visual cues (they're still trying to come up with statistically significant values for the social norm ranges, but if betas are good enough for google, they're good enough for me!). Really fine tune that program so that it reads personal norms, not social norms. Shake hard twice, add three ice cubes and a orange slice, and you'll have a drink I like to call when paranoia and reality collide.

...can it be called SciFi if it isn't actually fictitious?

Personally, I'm not worried. (2, Interesting)

Blrfl (46596) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305152)

If this project goes as well for the FBI as its Virtual Case File program, which was only a small fraction of the cost of this monster even after all they money they spent trying to salvage it, I don't think we have much to worry about.

As much as we bemoan the devolution that's going on inside the government, it has the side benefit of keeping some of the things they're trying to do in check. Will Rogers and I are both glad we don't get all of the government we pay for.

EmoD down (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305168)

to say there have surprise to the world will have Prefeerably with an

value of service not cost (1)

v(*_*)vvvv (233078) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305270)

Obviously they are paying based on the value of the service, and not the cost of the service. That is not a lot of work for 10B. @1 mb per person, my $200 500 gig hdd can hold approx 500,000 people. Setting up a DB is easy. Providing secure, encrypted, logged, monitored access is easy. Backing data up is easy.

They are probably paying a lot in the name of security, although I am sure we would never hear about any breaches even if they did happen, and of course, data like this usually gets stolen with the help of someone who already works there.

Plug and play???? (2, Interesting)

russ1337 (938915) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305298)

...we need to be able to plug that in and play," an FBI spokesman is quoted.
plug and what?

This is not a fucking game.

I think the spokesman has been reading too many Microsoft boxes. FBI:"If my USB drive is 'plug and play' why cant a thumbprint, or a tattoo, or a piece of ear. Heck they do it on CSI all the time!"

I'm all for catching bad guys, but "plug and play", you've got to be fucking kidding.


(tee hee I said but plug)

Re:Plug and play???? (1)

Loibisch (964797) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305364)

I'm all for catching bad guys, but "plug and play", you've got to be fucking kidding.

(tee hee I said but plug)
You also said "fucking" and "kid"...do not move, the police is on their way!

FUD (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22305330)

FTFA:

The ACLU's Steinhardt doesn't believe it will stop there.
But offers nothing to back that up. Citation needed or you're spouting FUD.

Obligatory stupid title reference (1)

edittard (805475) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305528)

This will be of limited usefulness. Most people's fingerprints remain at a roughly constant size.

Brilliant move (1)

_KiTA_ (241027) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305532)

So they start up something like this, knowing the public doesn't want and can't really afford it, waste $1,000,000,000 USD, then when Obama/Hillary take over in 2009, they shut it down (well, Obama will anyway... Not 100% about Hillary), only to get accused of "wasting" $1B USD.

Re:Brilliant move (1)

Salgak1 (20136) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305600)

Several points.

One: we've had this since the early 1990s: this is an update of the system.

Two: It's in West Virginia, and the reason it's there is the King of Pork, Senator Robert "Ignore my history as a Grand Imperial Wizard of the KKK" Byrd. . .

That makes it inviolate. . .

Re:Brilliant move (1)

moeinvt (851793) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305648)

"when Obama/Hillary take over in 2009, they shut it down . . . "

Is that a joke?

You're completely delusionsal if you think Obama or Clinton would give up one iota of the executive power that George Bush has amassed during his presidency. If you care anything about civil liberties, you'll vote for Ron Paul or some 3rd party candidate.

everyone's a criminal now (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305660)

at least in the mind of the law enforcement people.

The funny thing is: once you start treating people in a certain way, they tend to behave like that. Treat people as if they're inferior and some of them will start to believe it. Make people think that they'll be treated as criminals and don't be surprised if they start to behave as if they are criminals.

Make it look as if the law has no respect for them, and the population will have less respect for the law.

This sort of initiative sends completely the wrong message - it doesn't make everyone safer, it just makes a few people richer.

That's where our tax dollars are going... (1)

Doug52392 (1094585) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305826)

Our taxes are being spent so the government can spy on everyone in the United States online, on the telephone, now even through fingerprints! No wonder the United States is trillions of dollars in debt.

What about education? Public schools need that money, but the government would rather spend it paying the National Security Agency to read every single thing people write online, now even track us through fingerprints.

They think their protecting us and preventing "terrorism", but they're just depriving us of our civil liberties.

Declaring EVERY SINGLE person in the United States as a criminal is NOT the way to protect us! When will they learn? They wiretap telephones, but if someone really wanted to get around that, they could, so it's a waste of time...

Irony (1)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22305958)

If you are a war veteran, your fingerprints are in the FBI database already. They have more law abiding citizens already than they do criminals.

"There was a murder? Better check thos Army killers!"

Re:Irony (1)

oddaddresstrap (702574) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306160)

Don't forget people who work or volunteer in a school (in WA, anyway), ever had a background check for a security clearance, etc., etc.

I'm sorry (1)

kellyb9 (954229) | more than 6 years ago | (#22306074)

I know the whole privacy trumpet is going to sound, but I don't really understand why this is too much of an issue. I'm sure someone will be kind enough to educate me, but these are just ways of identifying a person, nothing more. I can't see how this can be used invasivly. Any moreso than being placed in a police lineup. Especially, if it only includes the biometrics of criminals. Any thoughts?
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