A note in the USACM Technology Policy blog, covers EPIC's meeting and USACM's press release.
The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) convened a meeting today to look into the range of policy, technical, and social issues surrounding national identification systems in light of the recently passed Real ID Act, something we’ve been quite active on recently. In April, USACM sent the Senate a letter outlining its concerns about the security aspects of the database provisions and its national ID implications. However, Congress ultimately left many of the concerns of USACM and the privacy community unaddressed.
In light of today’s EPIC event, USACM issued a press release calling for a reconsideration of Real ID’s provisions...ACM’s US Public Policy Committee (USACM) added its voice to other organizations meeting in Washington today to express deep concerns over the recently passed Real ID Act, which USACM believes will create a de facto national identification system that erodes individuals’ privacy protections.Marc Rotenberg, EPIC’s executive director, began the meeting by pointing out how the Real ID Act had worked its way through the legislative process without any meaningful debate – even before affected communities had time to begin educating policymakers about some of the dangers and implications of the act. Rotenberg went on to suggest that the privacy and civil liberties communities have not given up the fight against Real ID. Accordingly, EPIC’s Real ID event was intended to promote the kind of debate that never really occurred before the act became law.
Addressing the impact on individual’s privacy protections, USACM Chair Eugene Spafford, a renowned cybersecurity expert, said, “The act’s stated goal is to reduce terrorists’ ability to travel, but it does little to actually inhibit a dedicated terrorist from securing a valid ID. At the same time, it vastly increases the risk that an average citizen’s personal data will be stolen. This is ill-conceived security strategy and one that should be reconsidered” ...