No one hates the talk of biblical “end of times” more than me. I think the book of Revelations should be burned in public squares around the world. Lately, however, you can’t deny the signs: epic floods, birds falling out of the sky, Iran’s nuclear bomb around the corner, and now the news this morning out of The White House that Obama is determined to pass legislation that would assign a digital online ID to every American citizen. If this passes, it will likely send a ripple effect around the world forcing other countries to follow suit.
Announced by Commerce Secretary Gary Locke at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, this trusted, digital identity will be different in nature to a national social security general ID card and aims at increasing the online security and privacy of people, while possibly eliminating the need to memorize passwords for all online accounts a user has set up on the web. Yeah, whatever: we might as well get a barcode burned on our foreheads. At least the announcement that the Commerce Department will take the job should please groups that have raised concerns over security agencies doing double duty in police and intelligence work. The Obama administration is currently drafting what it’s termed the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace, which is expected to be tabled at the Department of Commerce in a few months. Once passed, it shouldn’t be long before the Four Horsemen descend from the heavens.
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