in Security

Bruce Schneier on national ID cards

More wisdom from someone who knows things.

“My argument may not be obvious, but it’s not hard to follow, either. It centers around the notion that security must be evaluated not based on how it works, but on how it fails.

It doesn’t really matter how well an ID card works when used by the hundreds of millions of honest people that would carry it. What matters is how the system might fail when used by someone intent on subverting that system: how it fails naturally, how it can be made to fail, and how failures might be exploited.”

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  1. In Israel everyone has ID cards. They do cost a lot of money. They work well, as one layer in our defence against terrorism. They give us peace of mind, and mean that we are not scared that the person beside us in the bus station might be a terrorist. There are no widespread ongoing abuses of the system.

    ID cards can and do work. ID cards can and do save lives. A national ID card is not bad, it is just a card. How it is used is up to the citizens and their elected government.

    Someone like Bruce, a renowned security expert, should know that it is possible to put checks and balances into the system to make it work and work well. That is a security professional’s job, to assess need and assess risk, and marry the two in the most effective and acceptable way possible.

    I love my ID card.

  2. In Israel everyone has ID cards. They do cost a lot of money. They work well, as one layer in our defence against terrorism. They give us peace of mind, and mean that we are not scared that the person beside us in the bus station might be a terrorist. There are no widespread ongoing abuses of the system.

    ID cards can and do work. ID cards can and do save lives. A national ID card is not bad, it is just a card. How it is used is up to the citizens and their elected government.

    Someone like Bruce, a renowned security expert, should know that it is possible to put checks and balances into the system to make it work and work well. That is a security professional’s job, to assess need and assess risk, and marry the two in the most effective and acceptable way possible.

    I love my ID card.
    —–

  3. In Israel everyone has ID cards. They do cost a lot of money. They work well, as one layer in our defence against terrorism. They give us peace of mind, and mean that we are not scared that the person beside us in the bus station might be a terrorist. There are no widespread ongoing abuses of the system.

    ID cards can and do work. ID cards can and do save lives. A national ID card is not bad, it is just a card. How it is used is up to the citizens and their elected government.

    Someone like Bruce, a renowned security expert, should know that it is possible to put checks and balances into the system to make it work and work well. That is a security professional's job, to assess need and assess risk, and marry the two in the most effective and acceptable way possible.

    I love my ID card.
    —–

  4. In Israel everyone has ID cards. They do cost a lot of money. They work well, as one layer in our defence against terrorism. They give us peace of mind, and mean that we are not scared that the person beside us in the bus station might be a terrorist. There are no widespread ongoing abuses of the system.

    ID cards can and do work. ID cards can and do save lives. A national ID card is not bad, it is just a card. How it is used is up to the citizens and their elected government.

    Someone like Bruce, a renowned security expert, should know that it is possible to put checks and balances into the system to make it work and work well. That is a security professional’s job, to assess need and assess risk, and marry the two in the most effective and acceptable way possible.

    I love my ID card.