Tag Archives: DHS

Louisiana Senators Want to Cave to Real ID – Push Back LA!

states oppose real id 2012 ncsl

Kaye Beach

May 15, 2013

In 2008 – Louisiana Prohibits Implemantation of the Federal REAL ID Act    HB 715 “The Legislature of Louisiana does hereby direct the Department of Public Safety and Corrections, including the office of motor vehicles, not to implement the provisions of the REAL ID Act . . .”

Now some uncharacteristically weak-kneed Louisiana Senators want to overturn the state’s hard won anti-real ID law.

la power coalition

What this journalist neglected to report in the following article is that  the freedom loving citizens of the great state of Louisiana are not very happy with this capitulation to DHS’s “Big Sis”  Sec. Napolitano and they were there today to register their displeasure.

Members of the Louisiana Power Coalition showed up at the committe hearing today and made thier voices heard.  If you or someone you know lives in LA and prefer to remain Real ID free, contact the Louisiana Power Coalition and find out what you can do to help stop Real ID in LA!

If you want to watch the SENATE TRANSPORTATION, HIGHWAYS AND PUBLIC WORKS COMMITTEE  procedings here is the link to the video The bill is SB 395 and it is this amendment to that bill that they are discussing the discussion begins at about 7 minutes.  Three members of  Louisiana Power Coalition speaks out at abot 28 minutes.

By the way, Senator Adley is mistaken.  Diane Long for the Louisiana Power Coalition was accurate in het statement that the photos currently collected for driver’s licenses in LA is indeed,  a biometric. 

As explained by Mark Lerner, co founder of the Constitutional Alliance and the leading expert on the Real ID Act and biometrics in the US;

It is not widely known that all states in the United States are “capturing” a digital facial image/photograph that is facial recognition compatible.   Real ID compliant and non-Real ID compliant states use the same standard for the digital facial image/photograph capture.  Every state works with AAMVA (American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators).  AAMVA has adopted the ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) standard that is required by the Real ID Act (page 68, footnote 17, Notice of Proposed Rule Making, Real ID Act 2005).  In addition, the vendors who have been awarded state driver’s license contracts have adopted the same standard as called for in the Real ID Act 2005.

La. Senate panel backs bill that would use state-issued driver’s license as national ID card

BATON ROUGE, Louisiana — Louisiana driver’s licenses would be used to comply with federal law requiring each state to create a national identification card for air travel, including domestic flights, under a proposal inserted Wednesday into a House bill by the Senate Transportation Committee.

Senators added that language into a separate measure by Rep. Johnny Guinn, R-Jennings. If approved by lawmakers, the provision would reverse a state stance since 2008 rejecting the added security requirement as too intrusive.

Officials with the state motor vehicles department said that if the state doesn’t comply with the federal Real ID law, residents would need passports to fly starting in October.

“Whether we like it or not, we’re stuck with it,” said Sen. Robert Adley, R-Benton, committee chairman. “It’s better to deal with it like this.”

. . .

Under the proposal, federally compliant driver’s licenses would be stamped with a Department of Homeland Security gold star emblem and would require that residents present additional documentation, such as a birth certificate or a Social Security card, to state motor vehicle officials when applying for a license or a renewal.

That information would be entered into a national database.

Read more

http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/f03cae496103400689de3e0f02cebb71/LA-XGR–Real-ID-Louisiana

The Immigration Reform Bill – Prodding Forth Real ID, an INTERNATIONAL Biometric ID

global biometric id

Kaye Beach

May 14, 2013

On May 10th The Blaze ran a headline that asks; Is There a Scary Biometric ‘National ID System’ Tucked into the Immigration Bill?

The answer is YES!

But wait!  There’s more. . .I sometimes feel like I am belaboring the point but it seems to me the distinction between a national and INTERnational biometric identity system is a very important one.

Study that graphic up there.  It is the simple three step recipe for a single, global biometric identification system.  Read this post then look at it again and see if you can grokk what I’m telling you.

The federal Real ID Act of 2005 imposed federal guidelines that use international standards on state driver’s licenses and ID cards.  You may remeber that at least 25 states said no to Real ID by passing either a law or a resolution against the implementation of the Real ID Act.  Nevertheless, Real ID has continued to be implemented in most states to various degrees.

“By the deadline of January 13, 2013, most states will be substantially or materially or fully compliant with REAL ID” –Janice Kephart, Feb. 2012

It is important to note though, that ALL states are capturing and storing applicants’ digital facial images.  And although not all of the states are actually using this facial biometric as intended by the Real ID Act, eventually they will be.   The immigration reform bill (S.744, the ‘Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act’) will make sure of it.

In case you missed it, now, when you apply for a state driver’s license, a state identification card or any other form of government issued photo ID really, you are having your facial biometrics captured by a high resolution photograph.  High resolution digital cameras capture, map, digitize and database our facial features for the purpose of use by facial recognition technology.

Facial recognition technology enables remote identification and tracking through networked camera systems without our knowledge or consent.  As a matter of fact, facial biometrics is the governments biometric of choice because it can be used to identify and investigate us at-a-distance without our knowledge or consent.

Pay close attention here: This digital image on your state driver’s license or ID card is, by definition, a biometric.

The standard specified in the Real ID regulations for your state driver’s license and ID cards ensures that the digital facial image is facial recognition compatible.  That standard is the adopted standard of the ICAO, the International Civil Aviation Organization, an agency of the UN.

(Want more information?  Read REAL ID – BIOMETRIC FACT SHEET)

International standards exist for one purpose;  to enable the global sharing of that information.

REAL ID is. . .the current face of a far larger, international government and private economic effort to collect, store, and distribute the sensitive biometric data of citizens to use for the twin purposes of government tracking and economic control.” -PA Rep. Sam Rohr

Real ID is technically voluntary for the states.  What the government has always intended, is for Real ID to be practically mandatory for the citizens.  This is why the threat hangs over our heads that if we do not have a Real ID card by a certian date, we will not be able to fly or enter a federal building.

“In the future, only those state issued Driver Licenses and  Identification cards which are fully compliant with the REAL ID act of 2005 will be authorized for use as identification for official federal
government purposes, such as boarding commercial aircraft and entering  certain regulated federal facilities.” Alabama DMV-STAR ID

The road to Real ID compliance has admittedly been a rather slow and arduous one but the Immigration Reform bill (S.744, the ‘Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act’), if passed, will put a stop to any state foot dragging on Real ID because citizens will have to have it in order to work!

 A Real ID compliant driver’s license is specifically named as one of the acceptable ID documents in the bill (but all ID documents specified in the bill are biometric ID’s.)

To be perfectly clear – with S.744, producing your government issued, internationally standardized biometric ID is mandatory.  You will not be able gain permission to work without it. 

In authoritarian societies you must always have permission.

Forget privacy.  That is not what this is about.  This is about the balance of power between us and our government.  This is about control.  If we wish to retain control over our own lives, we will not accept government serializing of our bodies and we won’t allow the government to turn our rights into privileges

The Sec. of the Dept. of Homeland Security also has the option to add any other biometric or security feature as a requirement for those who wished to be employed so facial biometrics is the minimum biometric requirement but iris scans, fingerprints, or any other biometric could be required as well.

The new comprehensive immigration reform bill is not the first step in enrolling US citizens in the global biometric identification system.  The first step was that every government issued ID (especially the driver’s license) captured and collected your biometric data and that that data was collected in accordance with international standards.  The second step is to share your biometric data, to connect databases so that they can get that data flowing freely from the state and local databases on to the federal ones and eventually into global data systems.

One other important step in this global system of identification and control is to make sure we have to produce our global biometric ID for everything.  Or at least everything that we do that government wants to track and control.  And don’t forget that with biometric ID, your body IS your ID.  It’s the databases and not the card we should be focusing on.

Here are a few more facts about the bill as drafted;

Requires ALL potential employees to be authorized to work through the Dept. of Homeland Security.  Even If you are already employed when the proposed law goes into effect, you still will have to go through this authorization process.

Authorization hinges upon biometric identification.  Biometric data, including but not necessarily limited to, digital facial image, is required.  Real ID compliant driver’s licenses are cited as one acceptable form of biometric ID but the bill leaves the door open for the Sec. of the Dept. of Homeland Security to add other security requirements as he or she see fit.

The immigration reform bill requires employers to use a “photo tool” to verify the identity of each employee.  The term ‘photo tool’ is simply a euphemism for facial recognition software that will be used to match the facial biometrics provided by the potential employee to a federal database.

Where will this federal database come from?  I asked this question of Mark Lerner, co-founder of The Constitutional Alliance,  the leading expert on biometrics and the Real ID Act.

Here is his reply:

 “The answer will come in the Rulemaking process. There are two possible scenarios. In either scenario the “key” will be the photos stored in state DMV databases. Whether it will be DHS requiring employers to send photos to DHS and DHS having direct or indirect access to state DMV photo databases or whether DHS will require the photos the employers uses to be provided directly to states for the states to compare to photos in the state DMV database remains unclear. I also believe it is clear DHS will get the photo regardless.”

Access to the biometric data held in state DMV databases will be a must. 

There are reasons I have been having a fit trying to get my biometric data OUT of the state Department of Public Safety database.  I think this bill goes a long way in making my argument for me.  Read more about my lawsuit against the state of Oklahoma for the unwarranted collection of my biometric data here.

There is more to this bill to be concerned about  For instance,  the unconstitutional lack of due process.  Every person must prove they are a US citizen before they can work.  If the system says you do not pass muster, you are required to be terminated from your job at the end of an administrative process.   Will have more info on this and other issues soon.

ultimate control whitehead

Okla. Heads UP! Drone Surveillance Bill In Committee Tuesday 26th

Eye in the Sky Must Have a Warrant!

Eye in the Sky Must Have a Warrant!

Kaye Beach

Feb. 25, 2013

HB1556 will be heard in the House Aerospace and Energy Committee at 1:30 Tuesday Feb. 26th  Calls, emails needed today!

House Bill 1556-the Oklahoma Unmanned Aerial Surveillance Act

HB 1556 by Rep. Paul Wesselhoft requires law officers, absent an emergency, to obtain a warrant first before using drones for surveillance purposes and prohibits the state from outfitting drones with weapons.

The FAA estimates as many as 30,000 drones could be flying in US skies by 2020 and Oklahoma is poised to become a state leader in the drone industry.  In fact, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security launched one of its first test flights for civil use of drones over the skies of Oklahoma in December 2012.

FORT SILL — The small, winged drone quietly soared overhead as SWAT team members closed in on a building at Fort Sill.

When a suspect sprinted from the structure, the drone banked through a cloudless afternoon sky in an effort to track the person.

A few miles away, two Lockheed Martin technicians sat in a converted bedroom of a ranch-style house using a laptop computer to control the drone’s movements. They followed the action on a video relay.  NewsOK, Dec. 31, 2012 Read more

Drones are capable highly advanced surveillance. Law enforcement drones can carry various types of equipment including live-feed video cameras, facial recognition, automatic license plate readers, infrared cameras and more.  Drone manufacturers admit some are designed to carry “less lethal” weapons such as Tasers or rubber bullets and law enforcement has openly expressed interest in utilizing these weapons.

HB1556 will be heard in the House Aerospace and Energy Committee.(contact info below)  Call and tell them that you want them to support HB 1556 for these reasons:

  • Drones should be deployed by law enforcement only with a warrant, in an emergency, or when there are specific and articulable grounds to believe that the drone will collect evidence relating to a specific criminal act.
  • Images should be retained only when there is reasonable suspicion that they contain evidence of a crime or are relevant to an ongoing investigation or trial.
  • Usage policy on domestic drones should be decided by the public’s representatives, not by police departments, and the policies should be clear, written, and open to the public.
  • Use of domestic drones should be subject to open audits and proper oversight to prevent misuse.
  • Domestic drones should not be equipped with lethal or non-lethal weapons.

Aerial, warrantless surveillance is a violation of our Fourth Amendment rights and our right to privacy!

Oklahoma House Aerospace and Energy Committee Members

Email block bcc;

johntrebilcock@okhouse.gov,weldon.watson@okhouse.gov, donarmes@okhouse.gov, mikebrown@okhouse.gov, david.brumbaugh@okhouse.gov, mariancooksey@okhouse.gov,  scott.inman@okhouse.gov, steve.kouplen@okhouse.gov, randy.mcdaniel@okhouse.gov, rcpruett@okhouse.gov, mike.sanders@okhouse.gov, bensherrer@okhouse.gov, garybanz@okhouse.gov, david.brumbaugh@okhouse.gov,leedenney@okhouse.gov, charlie.joyner@okhouse.gov stevemartin@okhouse.gov jerrymcpeak@okhouse.gov, mikereynolds@okhouse.gov,  colby.schwartz@okhouse.gov, aaron.stiles@okhouse.gov, lisajbilly@okhouse.gov, josh.cockroft@okhouse.govjwhickman@okhouse.gov,  dan.kirby@okhouse.gov, mark.mcbride@okhouse.gov, eric.proctor@okhouse.gov, sean.roberts@okhouse.gov, seneca.scott@okhouse.gov

Chair Rep. John Trebilcock johntrebilcock@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7362

Rep. Weldon Watson  weldon.watson@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7330

Rep. Don Armes donarmes@okhouse.gov (405) 557-7307

Rep. Mike Brown mikebrown@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7408

Rep. David Brumbaugh david.brumbaugh@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7347

Rep. Marian Cooksey  mariancooksey@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7342

Rep. Scott Inman scott.inman@okhouse.gov   (405) 557-7370

Rep. Steve Kouplen steve.kouplen@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7306

Rep. Randy McDaniel  randy.mcdaniel@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7409

Rep. R.C. Pruett  rcpruett@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7382

Rep. Mike Sanders mike.sanders @okhouse.gov (405) 557-7407

Rep. Ben Sherrer bensherrer@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7364

Rep. Gary W. Banz  garybanz@okhouse.gov (405) 557-7395

Rep. David Brumbaugh david.brumbaugh@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7347

Rep. Lee Denney leedenney@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7304

Rep. Charlie Joyner charlie.joyner@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7314

Rep. Steve Martin  stevemartin@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7402

Rep. Jerry McPeak  jerrymcpeak@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7302

Rep. Mike Reynolds mikereynolds@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7337

Rep. Colby Schwartz colby.schwartz@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7352

Rep. Aaron Stiles aaron.stiles@okhouse.gov (405) 557-7386

Rep. Lisa J. Billy  lisajbilly@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7365

Rep. Josh Cockroft  josh.cockroft@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7349

Rep. Jeffrey W. Hickman  jwhickman@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7339

Rep. Dan Kirby  dan.kirby@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7356

Rep. Mark McBride  mark.mcbride@okhouse.gov

(405) 557-7346

Rep. Eric Proctor  eric.proctor@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7410

Rep. Sean Roberts  sean.roberts@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7322

Rep. Seneca Scott  seneca.scott@okhouse.gov  (405) 557-7391

Targeted Interstate Photo Sharing (TIPS): Homeland Security, NLETS and the IACP Target Your Biometric Driver’s License Photo

target dl 1

Kaye Beach

Dec. 29, 2012

In the modern surveillance state it’s all about the biometrics, especially facial recognition which allows for at-a-distance identification and investigation of individuals without their knowledge or consent-no warrant required!

Very few realize that upon issuance of a state driver’s license, a state identification card, or any other form of government issued photo ID, we are having our facial biometrics captured by high resolution photography.  The analog cameras in every state have been replaced with high resolution digital cameras that capture, map, digitize, and database our facial features for use with facial recognition technology.

The federal REAL ID Act was passed in 2005.  The first (and most important!) benchmark of REAL ID is capture and retention of the driver’s license applicant’s facial image.

A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

The following is from an article published in Nov. of this year by the Police Chief, the official magazine of the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP);

(“Image” means biometric image which is quite different than a simple photograph)

“In 2006, the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate gave the International Justice and Public Safety Network (Nlets) funds to implement driver’s license image sharing between the states. Nlets is a nonprofit organization owned by the 50 states that has connections to every federal, state, local, and military law enforcement agency in the United States. If an agency’s technical capabilities allow, officers can query state driver’s license databases from a mobile or a desktop device and obtain an image in a manner of seconds.”

A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words, From The Police Chief, vol. LXXIX, no. , November 2012. Copyright held by the International Association of Chiefs of Police, 515 North Washington Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 USA

Your state department of public safety or DMV driver’s license database provides your biometric data which tethers your body to other unique biographical data such as your social security number, age, address and more.  As a tool for surveillance and control, your faceprint is invaluable.

 “Today, more than 25 states have implemented this technology and are providing law enforcement images. In the next year, at least 12 more states will implement this technology.” A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

Now,  law enforcement can, simply by taking your picture, identify and investigate you as you go about your business in public without you even being aware that this is happening.

“For some time now, officers have been able to retrieve images through a mobile device while on the street to help identify individuals.” A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

The truth is that they cannot do this everywhere, yet.  While the technology is in place there is still the issue of access to be dealt with.  This is a legal and not a technical matter.  As we know, if the government has the technical ability to do something, they believe that they should be able to do it.  In other words, the law must conform to the capability of the technology and not the other way around.  Policy, once (somewhat) grounded in principle is now rooted in practice so now if they can do it, they will do it and they are doing it.

Undercover cops secretly use smartphones, face recognition to spy on crowds

This kind of surveillance is damaging.   Psychologically, pervasive surveillance, or even the possibility of it, is universally understood to change the behavior of those subjected to it.  It induces conformity of behavior and of thought as well.  As the range of surveillance grows, our ability to simply be, to exercise our free will, shrinks.

“Nlets will not consider photo sharing a success until it is implemented in all 50 states” link

Targeted Interstate Photo Sharing (TIPS)

“Nlets and DHS S&T have been working to expand the use of images in public safety. A new DHS/Nlets project called Targeted Interstate Photo Sharing (TIPS)” A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words

NLETS formerly the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications Service is now THE INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE & PUBLIC SAFETY NETWORK

NLETS

“links together every state, local, and federal and International law enforcement (INTERPOL), justice and public safety agency for the purpose of exchanging critical information.”  http://www.nlets.org/

As this law enforcement writer notes,

“when we engage in innovative law enforcement technology solutions, we need to take extra care to adequately address the security and privacy of personally identifiable information.”  

And who does the writer fear, is not adequately addressing the security and privacy of our personally identifiable information?  Good old NLETS.

Read; When the Cops are Worried About Your Privacy-You Should Worry Too!

NLETS role has always been to serve the state’s law enforcement needs, but that role, as noted by NLETS, is changing.

From Hot Trends and Innovations at Nlets 2012 Slide # 42

While Nlets is 45 years old this year, we have always taken the “child” role, with the States being the “parent”

–In recent years, the child is becoming the parent in many aspects.

Why? For one thing NLETS is now being funded and thus, directed by the federal government.

nlets grant funders Hot trends innovations ppt 2012Slide # 47

Slide # 17

From Hot Trends and Innovations at Nlets 2012

PROJECT SPONSOR

Department of Homeland Security

When lines of authority are blurred, power naturally defaults to the highest level.  The states are not ‘partners’ with the federal government in matters that require state authority over their jurisdiction.

From the Legal Information Institute;

Jurisdiction-The term jurisdiction is really synonymous with the word “power”

Jurisdiction is the territory within which a court or government agency may properly exercise its power

State and local policing is a jurisdictional matter and the states and local governments have conceded their authority in this.  Informational jurisdiction is no exception and in fact leads physical control.

What is revealed in this IACP Nov. 2012 article is that the Department of Homeland Security has funded an international non-governmental organization, the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), to manage the operational issues of the endeavor; Targeted Interstate Photo Sharing (TIPS).

“The DHS S&T has funded the IACP Technology Center to provide a practitioner group to advise Nlets on operational issues. These experienced practitioners will provide input on how this technology can be used in the field.”

What that means is that we are in trouble. 

The IACP is an international, non-governmental organization accredited by the United Nations and has been instrumental in bringing about profound changes to our nation politically, technologically and culturally.  There has been a great paradigm shift in our nation since 9-11 that spans all agencies of government.  This shift affects every aspect of our lives and has practically decimated the US Constitution and Bill of Rights.  US citizens, regardless of their political persuasion, are united in astonishment as they witness the slash and burn abrogation of one cherished right after another.

There is no sector of our society left untouched by the new paradigm and each has its own specialists attending to the transformation in their particular realm.  In the realm of policing, it is the IACP who is in charge of nurturing and tending this transformation.

Here is just one example;

Intelligence Led Policing and Fusion Centers: How the IACP Helped the USA to Cross the Rubicon

I hate to share information like this without providing you with any solutions.  I have been working diligently for years to find a way for us to protect our biometric data which is the key to our government’s efforts to create the most effective and efficient surveillance society ever experienced on this earth.

Although I have found no solution in legislation, no real willingness by enough of our elected representatives to do what they took an oath to do; to protect our liberty I do still recommend that you contact your state representative and tell them if you have concerns about open access to your data contained in the state Dept. of Public Safety database.  Tell them that you expect them to protect your personal information from being freely shared and used on a whim to track and spy on you.  They need to hear concerns from their constituents.

It is clear that we cannot stop the government from sharing this information in ways that will hurt our ability to control our own lives.   If we want to protect ourselves we must remove our biometrics from the system by either not giving it to them in the first place or taking legal action to remove it.

That is what I am trying to do, remove my biometric data from the system.  There is just no good reason for it being collected in the first place and no one ever informed me or you of what was being taken from us when we applied for our state driver’s license and they certainly never warned us about the repercussions of trusting them with our most personal information.

Read more about my lawsuit

My Real ID Reckoning

Latest update and request for support

Stop Biometric ID!  Kaye Beach needs your support for lawsuit

Sen. Tom Coburn on Fusion Center Follies

Kaye Beach
Nov. 8, 2012
Sen. Tom Coburn is hoping that the Senate subcommittee report that he co-authored will spark fusion center reform.    Read the Report and share a copy to your state legislator too!
Nov. 6, 2012
By TOM COBURN

Since the 9/11 attacks, Congress and the White House have invested hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars in support of dozens of state and local fusion centers across the United States. After a two-year Senate investigation identified problems with nearly every aspect of the Department of Homeland Security’s involvement with these centers — including irrelevant, untimely or useless intelligence reporting to DHS, among other widespread deficiencies — there is a clear need for reform.

Since 2003, more than 70 state and local fusion centers, supported in part with federal funds, have been created or expanded to strengthen U.S. intelligence capabilities and detect, disrupt and respond to domestic terrorist activities. DHS’ support for and involvement with these centers has centered on their professed ability to strengthen federal counterterrorism efforts. However, as the investigation found, there are significant factors hindering this initial intent to connect the dots in the sharing of terrorism-related information among state, local and federal officials.

 

Read More

REAL ID-Great for Gun Control and a whole lot more!

Kaye Beach

Oct. 16, 2012

Prescient words from 2008;

The long-term plan for REAL ID is to force its biometric ID functions on federal, state, local and private entities for all transactions. Thus, ID confirmation by a distant bureaucracy becomes permission for essential daily activities including banking, doctor visits, transit, school attendance and purchases — including guns.

. . .By participating in REAL ID, Pennsylvanians will be subjected to scrutiny by a host of federal agencies with every swipe of a REAL ID card. This is de facto gun registration, only worse. Once a gun buyer is identified, other information such as military service, purchases, rentals, travel, and medical history will be easily cross-referenced and subjected to interpretation. It’s inevitable that politicized standards will emerge that can be used to deny Pennsylvanians the right to keep and bear arms — everyone except violent criminals and politicians’ bodyguards.

Read more

Yesterday was the deadline for states to notify the Dept. of Homeland Security as to whether or not they will be in material compliance with the REAL ID Act of 2005.

The deadline for compliance with the REAL ID Act has been moved up three times since the law was passed.  Now we have almost reached the final deadline.

DHS expressed confidence at the end of August this year that all states would be in significant compliance with the law by Jan. 15 2013, the final deadline for state compliance for REAL ID.

“All 56 states have submitted some documentation of their status with respect to the material compliance benchmarks or “elements” of REAL ID to DHS since 2009. On the basis of the total dataset of states reporting, all states meet or commit to meet 83 percent of the material compliance benchmarks, which DHS believes may understate state progress.”

Americans have taken note of the fact that demands for ID and even the swiping of their driver’s license has exploded.  Now that resistance by the states to the national/international ID card has been largely overcome – watch out!  REAL ID will be increasingly required for just about every thing you need, including guns.

This is what REAL ID was made for.

Remember 25 states passed either a law or resolution prohibiting the implementation of REAL ID, including the great state of Oklahoma.  But they have just about pulled it off anyways.  Oklahoma is a mere 1 benchmark away from material compliance.  And other states are seeing “stars”

Back in 2009, Mayors Against Illegal Guns were already smacking their lips at the prospect of using REAL ID for gun control.

Recommendation 3: The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) should require REAL ID-compliant identification for all gun purchases after December 1, 2014.  read more

One little known fact about REAL ID is that there is no statutory limit on “official purposes” that the REAL ID can be required for. (There are currently three official purposes; boarding a commercial airliner, entering a federal building and nuclear facility)  What this means is that the Secretary of the Dept. of Homeland Security has unfettered authority to add anything she likes to official purposes that require a REAL ID.  That could be guns, ammo, prescriptions . . . anything.

Read more about REAL ID

REAL ID- MORE Than Just Drivers License Control and Expanding Rapidly

Oklahoma Tests Surveillance Drones for Homeland Security

Kaye Beach

Oct. 16, 2012

“I don’t know how much [drones] will be used within the U.S.,” says Ruth Doherty, a top official with the Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate tasked with countering the domestic threat of homemade bombs. Asked about domestic drone use for bomb-spotting by Danger Room, she replies, “A case has to be made that they’re economically feasible, not intrusive and acceptable to the public.”  http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2011/01/spy-drones-over-america-dhs-would-rather-not/

That was less than a year ago that DHS made that statement.  Now?  Here they come and in Oklahoma no less!

Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin put out a press release on June 28, 2012 about the program and carefully avoided any indication of law enforcement use of the drones choosing instead to focus on life saving, first responder uses.  “The program will research and test Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (SUAS), focusing on possible applications for first responders, including search and rescue scenarios, response to radiological and chemical incidents and fire response and mapping.” read more

Danger Room‘s Spencer Ackerman reports on Oct. 8, 2012

In the coming months, Fort Sill, Oklahoma will become a proving ground to learn what small surveillance drones can add to “first responder, law enforcement and border security scenarios,” according to a recent solicitation to the country’s various drone manufacturers. Each selected drone will undergo five days’ worth of tests as part of a new program from DHS’ Science and Technology directorate, called Robotic Aircraft for Public Safety or, gloriously, RAPS.

Like many in the military experimenting with drone miniaturization, DHS is thinking small. The drones it wants to bring to Fort Sill will ideally be launched by hand, like the Army and Marines’ Raven. They should weigh under 25 pounds. Assembly should take a matter of minutes, and training for their remote pilots and technician a matter of days. DHS isn’t looking for drones that can loiter over an area for a long time: just 30 minutes to two hours, a hint that the department doesn’t foresee drones becoming a primary surveillance tool. “Law enforcement operations, search and rescue, and fire and hazardous material spill response” are some of the potential drone missions the RAPS program envisions.

Read More

Big Sis in Hot Water?

Kaye Beach

Oct. 4, 2012

The scathing US Senate report released early this week is 141 pages of fascinating reading but it could cause a real confidence crisis for those who still think that trading liberty for security is a decent bargain.

Besides the fact that the Dept. of Homeland Security doesn’t know exactly how much it has given to states and cities for the Fusion Centers or how that money was spent, the Secretary of DHS, Janet Napolitano dubbed “Big Sis” by Matt Drudge, also has trouble getting her facts straight.

Fusion Centers have been at the center of many, many civil liberty scandals since they were created and a wide swath of concerned or active Americans from right to left have found themselves lumped in with or labeled as “extremists” at some point or another by the dubious ‘intelligence’ that the spy centers produce.  I hope they are all enjoying the fact that the Centers and Big Sis herself, are getting a little, long overdue scrutiny but also hope that they take this report to their state legislators and demand that the “pools of ineptitude and civil liberties intrusions” in their states be examined just as closely.

Report: Napolitano misled Congress on terrorism ‘fusion’ centers

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano repeatedly misled lawmakers about one of her department’s signature initiatives, the development of special centers where state and local police could share information about terrorism and other crimes with their federal counterparts, a bipartisan report from the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations states.

Ms. Napolitano failed to report to Congress serious problems with the so-called “fusion center” program, according to the report. She insisted publicly that the program was a success, but two reports from her own department found, what congressman called, “serious problems” with the fusion centers.

“The findings of both the 2010 and 2011 assessments contradict public statements by [Homeland Security] officials” including congressional testimony from Ms. Napolitano, the report states.

Investigators also found that Ms. Napolitano and other officials repeatedly claimed there were 72 fusion centers around the country, when internal documents revealed that there were only 68.

DHS ‘fusion centers’ “pools of ineptitude, waste and civil liberties intrusions”

Kaye Beach

Oct. 3, 2012

Maybe the civil liberty violations alone weren’t enough to get the kind of attention on these hometown spy centers deserve but add to that the shocking lavish spending, waste and ineptitude. .  .well finally!

Thanks to Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) Oklahoma’s own Senator Tom Coburn for their great work on this eye opening report on DHS’ Fusion Centers. (Read the report)

Close them down!

The Washington Post’s Robert O’Harrow reports;

Oct. 2, 2012An initiative aimed at improving intelligence sharing has done little to make the country more secure, despite as much as $1.4 billion in federal spending, according to a two-year examination by Senate investigators.The nationwide network of offices known as “fusion centers” was launched after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks to address concerns that local, state and federal authorities were not sharing information effectively about potential terrorist threats.But after nine years — and regular praise from officials at the Department of Homeland Security — the 77 fusion centers have become pools of ineptitude, waste and civil liberties intrusions, according to a scathing 141-page report by the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs permanent subcommittee on investigations.

Read More

Dept. of Homeland Security Releases 2012 Privacy Report

Kaye Beach

September 28, 2012

Th report touts small improvements but bigger problems are revealed.

EPIC the Electronic Privacy Information Center reports;

The Department of Homeland Security has released its 2012 Privacy
Office Annual Report to Congress. The report details the expansion of
the National Counterterrorism Center’s five-year retention policy for
records on US Persons, the agency’s social media-monitoring initiatives,
and privacy training for fusion centers personnel; however, it does not
discuss several new DHS-funded initiatives, including the Future
Attribute Screening Technology, or FAST, a “Minority-Report”-like
proposal for “pre-crime” detection. Also, according to the report the
Transportation Security Administration has still failed to adopt
privacy safeguards for airport body scanners.

Two DHS Privacy Office investigations led to the finding of agency non-
compliance. One of those investigations involved DHS’s use of social
media monitoring. EPIC filed a FOIA request on DHS’ social media
monitoring program in April 2011, then filed suit against DHS in
December 2011 in order to force the disclosure of documents related
to the monitoring program, which searched for both suspicious
“keywords” and dissent against government programs. Earlier in 2012,
Congress held an oversight hearing on the DHS social media monitoring
program, and cited the documents obtained by EPIC.

While the report acknowledges agency shortcomings, it also touts DHS
privacy and transparency training as well public engagement through
speaker series, a redesigned FOIA site, and quarterly privacy advocacy
meetings. Significantly, the report fails to address the lack of timely
notice-and-comment rulemakings, particularly the TSA’s lack of
rulemaking on body scanners, ordered by a court in 2011 in response to
a suit brought by EPIC.

The report discusses DHS’ increased use of Privacy Compliance Reviews
(PCRs), which cover programs including cybersecurity, information
sharing, and the use of social media. The DHS Privacy Office used these
reviews to fail eight of its own agency programs for their lack of
privacy compliance documentation. None of the eight programs are
identified in the report, nor are any details of their lack of privacy
compliance.

The DHS Chief Privacy Office must present annual reports to Congress
and is also required by law to ensure that new agency programs do not
diminish privacy in the US.

DHS Privacy Office:  2012  Annual Report to Congress (Sept. 2012)
http://epic.org/redirect/092812-dhs-2012-privacy-report.html

EPIC:  DHS Privacy Office
http://epic.org/privacy/dhs-cpo.html

EPIC:  Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST)
http://epic.org/privacy/fastproject/

EPIC:  Fusion Centers
http://epic.org/privacy/fusion/

EPIC:  EPIC v. DHS (Social Media Monitoring)
http://epic.org/foia/epic-v-dhs-media-monitoring/

EPIC:  EPIC v. DHS (Suspension of Body Scanner Program)
http://epic.org/redirect/092812-epicvdhs-scannersuspend.html

 

Volume 19.18                                       September 28, 2012
———————————————————————–

Published by the
Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)
Washington, D.C.

http://www.epic.org/alert/epic_alert_19.18.html

“Defend Privacy. Support EPIC.”
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