OK - bluntly, I don't trust them

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OK - bluntly, I don't trust them

Postby meteorite » Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:42 pm

OK - I was born in the USA - I was too young to know better. But my Canadian parents brought me home at seven years of age, and under Canadian law I always was a Canadian citizen. I never resided in the US after that, or owned any property there, or held a job there.

At the time I became of age, US law forbade dual citizenship. You had to choose one or the other. Failing a formal renunciation your US citizenship lapsed if you resided, worked, or voted in the other country.

But now they have changed the law, and apparently removed the disqualification. Now they are claiming I am an American citizen, and therefore liable for American taxes. So please send in my 1040 and penalty payments for all the prior years I did not file one.

Of course since I have been paying the higher Canadian taxes all this time, which are higher than the US rates, under the international tax treaty I would be credited for that and hence not owe the Yanks anything anyway. But the whole thing is an immense hassle, and could lead eventually to border hassles should I ever go stateside again (say for a family funeral). Not to mention the time and effort to deal with the paperwork.

To me, this is an example of a government gone mad. Yee-haw!! We can generate the data and bigod we're going to milk it for the biggest cash grab we can. Governments cannot be trusted with your private information, and their pious assurances of privacy last just as long as it takes the bureaucrats to get their hands on it. Then, look out!

So if there's anything guaranteed to bring out my paranoid streak, it's an initiative like this, detailed in the current issue of Infopackets newsletter. It's enough to make you sympathize with the Tea Party.....

Gov't-Backed User Validation System likened to Online Drivers License

by Carlo Orlando on 20111004 @ 01:12PM EST |

Many people are still apprehensive about sending out their personal information online, for fear of having their identity stolen by a profit-seeking hacker.

Hoping to reduce the amount of "cyberphobia" in America, the White House is proposing a new initiative that looks to improve the current state of user authentication.

Authentication Method to use Multiple Confirmation Methods

While initial reports are limited, many believe that the new authentication system proposed by the White House would use at least two different ID confirmation methods.

One theory suggests that an encryption chip might be embedded into a person's phone, while others believe that smart cards and biometric identifiers (like fingerprints) may be used to confirm high-end transactions.

Currently, fingerprinting devices like the Eikon Digital Privacy Manager are available for everyday end users at a relatively low price point (about $47 at the time of writing).

These devices can be programmed to work with automated website password managers like RoboForm (in fact, this particular fingerprint hardware model is recommended by RoboForm).

Using this type of hardware / software encryption is by far one of the best methods for automatically logging into a secure website using a unique password (for every website) without having to remember any of them.
Banks Use Two-Factor Authentication System

Banks currently use a two-factor authentication system to confirm the identities of new customers when they open an account and later, issue depositors ATM cards.

Google also boasts a free system, called the "Google Identity Toolkit" for website operators who wish to shift users from passwords to third-party authentication.

Some have even likened the suggested changes to carrying a "virtual driver's license" because Internet users would use the same secure credentials on a number of websites.

In other words, an individual would not have to complete page-after-page of age-verification surveys since the authentication key would already provide a secure site with this information. (Source: statesman.com)
Online Commerce Campaign Likely to Attract Hackers

Foreseeable problems with a system of this nature might include verifiers potentially selling user data for a profit or sharing confidential information with law enforcement officials without a warrant.

As Aaron Titus, the chief privacy officer at Identity Finder, stated, "It took us decades to realize that we shouldn't carry our Social Security cards in our wallets. Carrying around cyber IDs seems even riskier." (Source: nytimes.com)

Still, with the proposed plans being the source for Washington debate, it is not certain whether the agenda will ever get put into practice.
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