Speakers » Seth Stodder

Seth Stodder

Former Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security, USA


Special Topic: Disruptive global trends and the role of effective identity technology

Session Chair:
Benji Hutchinson

Other Panelists:
Anne Shere Wallwork
Florian Forster (invited)

•    The threat of terrorism;
•    Mass displacement and movement of populations;
•    Political implications.

Regional conflicts, mass refugee migration, economic uncertainty, political unrest, domestic lone wolf attacks, and international terrorism are just some of the disruptive trends that have become complex global challenges. These challenges share the common requirement of needing to identify individuals for various reasons. Governments, non-governmental organizations, and for-profit companies face these challenges and must identify friend from foe, innocent from guilty, citizen from foreign national, or those entitled to social benefit. 

This panel will discuss major disruptive global trends affecting our world today and how identity technologies aid decision makers in their missions to prevent or manage the effects of those trends.  This panel will appeal to those working the fields of foreign policy and immigration, national defense and homeland security, and identity technology. 


Seth Stodder is a lawyer, writer, law professor, and frequent commentator on national security issues, borders and immigration, international trade, privacy, and constitutional law. Until recently, he served in the Obama Administration as Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security for Border, Immigration & Trade Policy and, prior to that, as Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security for Threat Prevention & Security Policy. In those roles, he led teams advising Department of Homeland Security (DHS) leadership and developing policy on border security, immigration and visa policy, trade, screening and vetting of individuals for security purposes, law-enforcement matters, and international information sharing. He oversaw the U.S. Visa Waiver Program, represented DHS on the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS), and served as Co-Chair of the DHS Social Media Task Force, stood up in the wake of the San Bernardino terrorist attacks. He also oversaw all DHS international engagements with the countries of the Western Hemisphere, as well as other countries around the world.

Earlier in his career, Mr Stodder served in the Bush Administration as Director of Policy and Planning for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, in the immediate wake of the 9/11 attacks. He has taught national security and counterterrorism law at the University of Southern California Law School, was a German Marshall Memorial Fellow, and is a Member of the Pacific Council on International Policy and the U.S. Supreme Court Bar. He received his J.D. from the University of Southern California Law School, and his B.A. from Haverford College.

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