Monday, April 19, 2004

National ID Cards

"A national ID card program will actually make us less secure" 1

"Security must be evaluated not based on how it works, but on how it fails" 1

"It will be forged. And even worse, people will get legitimate cards in fraudulent names" 1

"Additionally, any ID system involves people... people who regularly make mistakes" 1

"The main problem with any ID system is that it requires the existence of a database...Such a database would be a kludge of existing databases; databases that are incompatible, full of erroneous data, and unreliable. As computer scientists, we do not know how to keep a database of this magnitude secure, whether from outside hackers or the thousands of insiders authorized to access it...And when the inevitable worms, viruses, or random failures happen and the database goes down, what then? Is America supposed to shut down until it's restored?" 1

"What good would it have been to know the names of Timothy McVeigh, the Unabomber, or the DC snipers before they were arrested? Palestinian suicide bombers generally have no history of terrorism. The goal is here is to know someone's intentions, and their identity has very little to do with that." 1

1. Bruce Schneier, April 15, 2004. Crypto-Gram Newsletter.