[ISN] Official: Security won't hurt privacy

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Thu Jul 25 2002 - 03:42:07 PDT

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    Forwarded from: "eric wolbrom, CISSP" <ericat_private>
    Official: Security won't hurt privacy
    By William Matthews
    July 24, 2002
    Devising better ways to accurately identify individuals is a key part
    of the Bush administration's homeland security strategy, but a senior
    Bush aide promised July 23 that high-tech identification systems won't
    be allowed to undercut civil liberties.
    Steve Cooper told a gathering of congressional staffers and technology
    company representatives that the Bush administration does not favor
    any use of technology that undermines personal privacy or the openness
    of American society.
    Still, he said, the administration embraces biometric identification
    technologies to improve security at the nation's borders, in air
    travel, in federal buildings and elsewhere. Cooper is chief
    information officer in the Office of Homeland Security.
    Plans for extensive use of biometric identification, data mining,
    among other technologies, set off alarms last week when they were
    spelled out in President Bush's National Homeland Security Strategy.
    The American Civil Liberties Union, for example, denounced Bush's call
    for the federal government to help the states develop uniform driver's
    licenses and licensing procedures. The ACLU warned, "This plan
    proposes a national ID -- an internal passport -- pure and simple."
    But Cooper said the Bush administration is "not in favor and currently
    will not support a national ID card."
    "We are at war, and the war on terrorism requires a balance" between
    civil liberties and homeland security, Cooper said. It is "tough" to
    balance the two, but the administration will not sacrifice civil
    liberties for homeland security, Cooper vowed. "We will get it right."
    However, Cooper made it clear that the administration foresees a
    nation that relies much more heavily on high-tech identification for
    purposes that range from gaining access to the country to gaining
    access to a computer.
    The homeland security national strategy calls for creating "smart
    borders" that rely on biometric identification systems to identify
    terrorists and criminals. Biometrics should also be used to combat
    fraud in travel documents, the strategy says.
    Fingerprints and facial recognition technology are the favored
    biometric technologies at present, Cooper said. But retina and iris
    scans and other technologies are likely to grow more capable and gain
    wider acceptance, he said. The administration's policy is not to favor
    any particular biometric technologies, but to develop identification
    systems that can accommodate multiple technologies.
    To be acceptable to the federal government, smart cards, for example,
    would have to be able to accommodate more than one biometric
    identifier. That's because different agencies have already adopted
    favorite technologies, Cooper said.
    The State Department has invested heavily in facial recognition as its
    primary identification system, but the FBI is wedded to fingerprints.
    And neither is likely to give up its favorite, Cooper said. So a
    government smart card that is can be used to control building access
    should be able to accommodate both, he said.
    And the card that gets government workers into their buildings should
    also control their access to computer systems, serve as a trusted
    traveler card and perform other identification-dependent functions, he
    said. spacer Advertisement
    eric wolbrom, CISSP			Safe Harbor Technologies
    President & CIO				190 Goldens Bridge Ct.
    Voice 914.767.9090 ext. 6000		Katonah, NY 10536
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