Sessions » National identity concepts

National identity concepts


BLUE ROOM - Ballroom C
Day 1 - April 30

Most countries in the world have some form of national identification system, many compulsory. There are notable exceptions, however, especially those countries with English lineage, such as the UK, Canada, and the USA, among others.

This session will explore the cultural and political significance of national IDs, with reference to both their history and current climates. What is it about English based-heritage, in particular, that makes a national identification system problematic? The session will consider privacy and civil liberty issues and look at potential solutions for engineering nation-scale ID systems.      A key challenge to all identity systems is the initial enrollment of an individual. This is all the more complicated by digital enrollment, missing or incomplete documents and records, and high-quality forged documents. This session will address the risks involved and the evolving methods and technologies to mitigate them.

Ever-increasing numbers of passengers moving across borders is driving authorities to use innovative identity technology solutions. Smart mobile devices can be used both to increase security and ease passenger flows at airports and at land/sea borders.
From verifying a person’s biometrics, to checking the validity of a passenger’s physical travel credentials, this session will consider how smart mobile devices can provide both primary and secondary inspection solutions – and uncover some of the challenges associated with moving from hardware-based to mobile platforms.

Session Chairman’s Introduction
James A. Loudermilk, Senior Director, Innovation and Customer Solutions, IDEMIA National Security Solutions, USA

Documenting Americans: A political history of US national ID card proposals
Magdalena Krajewska, Associate Professor of Political Science, Wingate University, USA

In this speech Dr Magdalena Krajewska will outline the comprehensive political history of national ID card proposals and developments in identity policing in the United States. She will focus on the period from 1915 to 2017, including the post-9/11 debates and policy decisions regarding the introduction of technologically-advanced identification documents. Putting the United States in comparative perspective and connecting the vital issues of immigration and homeland security, Dr Krajewska will show how national ID card proposals have been woven into political conflict across a variety of policy fields. Her findings contradict conventional wisdom, debunking two common myths: that Americans are opposed to national ID cards and that American policymakers never propose national ID cards. Her work draws on extensive archival research; high-level interviews with politicians, policymakers, and ID card technology experts in Washington, DC and London; and public opinion polls.

•    The comprehensive history of national ID card proposals in the United States;
•    Connecting the vital issues of immigration and homeland security;
•    How national ID card proposals have been woven into political conflict.


Privacy and civil liberties considerations for a national ID system
Michelle Richardson, Deputy Director, Center for Democracy and Technology’s Freedom, Security, and Technology Project, USA

The American people have always rejected the idea of a national identification system as contrary to freedom and democracy. Since implementation of the REAL ID Act will soon create a de facto national ID system, this presentation will discuss: 

•    How to prevent national ID from evolving into a multi-purpose commercial and government tracking tool;
•    Why it is important to care about the general loss of control over personal data - not just 'bad apple' abuse;
•    How to evaluate national ID in context and holistically: in policing, national and cyber security efforts, and the private sector.


Privacy engineering for nation-scale identity systems
David Kelts, Director & Architect, IDEMIA Citizen Digital Identity, USA

Instructions on engineering for privacy are not abundantly available. While security can be quantified in dollars, and described in the news, privacy is not the same thing as security, even if a security breach can cause a privacy problem. So what is privacy to users of identity systems? What harms can we, as architects of identity systems, cause? How can we tell if a user feels that his or her privacy is threatened? What harm can identity software do to people?

This presentation will provide illustrations and practical guidance on how to identify the problematic data actions in identity software. The speaker will provide details on privacy problems found in one large scale identity system, and then examine the corrective re-architectures and changes in user guidance deployed to reduce that "creepy" feeling that one’s privacy is at risk.

•    The difference between security and privacy;
•    How large-scale identity systems unintentionally place privacy at risk;
•    How to correct both software and user guidance to reduce the risk to privacy.

Question and Answer Session

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