The White House released yesterday a draft document for a plan to create “Trusted Identities in Cyberspace.”
At first it sounds like a Good Thing… “no longer should individuals have to remember an ever-expanding and potentially insecure list of usernames and passwords to login into various online services,” it would be “user-centric,” etc. … this sounds like OpenID. But it’s not.
The draft imagines a world where:
An individual voluntarily requests a smart identity card from
her home state. The individual chooses to use the card to
authenticate herself for a variety of online services, including:
- Credit card purchases,
- Online banking,
- Accessing electronic health care records
- Securely accessing her personal laptop computer,
- Anonymously posting blog entries, and
- Logging onto Internet email services using a pseudonym
(cf. “Envision It!” box on pg 4)
This is a world where you need a “voluntarily” obtained ID card just to access a laptop that is compatible with a closed “Internet.”
(It’s telling that this initiative is a project of the Department of Homeland Security, having consulted with over 70 “stakeholders.”)
The document is essentially the groundwork for a plan to eliminate real online anonymity/pseudonymity by incentivizing buy-in to an “Identity Ecosystem.” Combine this with recent the Supreme Court decision concluding that names and addresses of petitioners are part of the public record, and you have the ingredients for a serious clash between political dissidents steeped in the cyber-culture of the largest ever “functioning anarchy” in recorded history and the powers that be in government and corporate America.