What's the Role of Homeland Security in the Government's Online ID Plan?

Last week, the government rolled out its National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace, trumpeting the "blueprint to reduce cybersecurity vulnerabilities and improve online privacy protections." Over at Miller-McCune, Emily Badget talked with Amie Stepanovich, national security counsel for the Electronic Privacy Information Center, to run through the plan's pros and cons. One troubling note is that the government has not revealed what role the Department of Homeland Security would play, even though it has long been associated with this idea.

Nowhere in the government's 45-page proposal is the Department of Homeland Security mentioned, but that agency has been involved throughout the idea's history, dating back to its lead in developing the federal employee ID card system. The public face of the proposal, instead, has been Commerce Secretary Gary Locke, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology, within Commerce, is set now to lead the plan forward.

Homeland Security's involvement, though, sends up yellow flags.

"We don't really know what their role with NSTIC is," Stepanovich said. "We know they were a partner in developing the strategy, and supposedly they have transitioned their role to NIST to implement it. I think, though, that we have to be aware as consumers of this program that if DHS continues to be involved, there are definitely concerns that are going to come with that."

Read the full story at Miller-McCune.

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