Thursday, December 29, 2005

National ID cards just around the corner

The spin for the latest push to have a standardized national ID card that is masquearding as a revamped national drivers' license is that the ID cards are for national security. They will be tougher, nearly impossible, for would-be terrorists and illegal immigrants to stroll into the land of opportunity (The U.S., not India where our jobs are going) and become falsified citizens.

The truth, as described by CNET News, is that these cards, which are likely to be signed into law because the legislation for them is attached to a spending bill for the Iraqi Occupation, will store every bit of your personal data. Not just the basics which many state-issued drivers licenses store but info beyond that such as your social security number and other personal data all available at the simple swipe of the card or via an electronic reader.

There is also talk that one form of standardizing these buggers is to plant an RFID chip in them. If you are unaware of what an RFID chip is, it essentially transmits its location as well as the data stored on it to a reader programmed to read that specific type of chip. Therefore, anyone with this specific reader would have access to your personal information. Above and beyond losing our last shred of anonymity which has already disappeared to a certain degree with the revelation of illegal federal wiretapping, the advent of a national ID card which would be scanned by bars, restaurants, convenience stores and banks is that the cards would be a marketers wet dream.

In short, by tracking each and every legal citizen of the U.S. and knowing their purchases as well as locations frequented, our very own government cold become the ultimate marketing company. Yay, more junk mail and targeted advertising!

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