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Connecticut To Store Biometric Information 732

Posted by timothy
from the your-license-is-ready-mr.-montag dept.
AugstWest writes: "I just got word that when I renew my driver's license, I will have to submit to allowing the CT DMV to store biometric information, as well as smile for facial recognition software from Viisage to be able to continue driving. I am so appalled, I don't even know where to begin. With all of the national law enforcement agencies opening up their databases to each other, is this the first step in taking a surveillance society to a tracking society?"
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Connecticut To Store Biometric Information

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  • Undue Restrictions (Score:4, Interesting)

    by akac (571059) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:14PM (#3336337) Homepage
    Just curious - what happens if you refuse? I guess they would prohibit you from getting a driver's license, but isn't there some law that prohibits the states from putting undue restrictions on basic priviliges (driving is a privilege).

    Next question would be if anybody would challenge this in a court of law.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I tried this in California. I refused to let them scan my thumb print and they told me flat out, no license. I demanded a refund of my fee and left. Eventually I got pulled over and was ordered by the police officer to go and get a valid California driver's license (at the time, I had, ironically, a Connecticut driver's license). Of course all of the CA DMV sheep could not understand when I explained to them, that scanning my thumb would do nothing to stop a criminal or a terrorist from getting a fake license or from using mine when it was stolen. They just looked at me with that typical mindless state employee look as if to say "C'mon don't you know that the government would not do this unless it was best." There is no hope.
    • by jgerman (106518) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:33PM (#3336425)
      Driving is a privilege


      Heard this crap before. Driving is a right. Yes, if reason can be shown that there is a valid purpose for not providing someone with a driver's license it's fair enough to dissallow them one. However, in this, to use a horribly cliche phrase, not haveing a drivers license bars you from participating in a wide variety of activities in this country. The gorvernemt really has no right, IMHO to divvy out drivers licenses. I always here the argument: "The government pays for the roads". Bullshit, I pay for the roads, you pay for the roads, all of us pay for the roads.


      Sorry for the rant but the whole driving thing with the government burns me up. Don't even get me started on the government mandated extortion that is mandatory auto insurance. ;)

      • by Zenin (266666)
        ,not haveing a drivers license bars you from participating in a wide variety of activities in this country.

        I'm curious; have you ever actually made a real effort to live without the use of a car? As someone who's been car-free by choice for about four years now, I'll be a bit presumtious and guess not.

        While you've "Heard this crap before", so have I, from the other side of the fence. On a good day only about one in ten of the drivers on the road should be anywhere near a car. While I'll quickly admit the US is far, far behind most sane countries wrt cycling and transit programs, it's not in the complete stone age. You aren't barred from anything by not having a license. In many parts of the country, you're infact liberated by the lack of a license.
      • a fender bender with some idiot who was DWI.

        Driving is a privilege and a responsability. Too many people kill and maim too many other people because they can't behave responsably.

        You want to rant. I've got a cemetery full of ranters for you and hospital wards and prosthetic companies solely filled and supported by morons who think they can handle a few tons of hurtling metal when they are so mentally deficient they shouldn't be allowed to walk home alone at night.
    • The right to move around is pretty fundamental. I'm thinking that there will probably be a lawsuit or two over this and at a minimum there will be an opt-out provision for the people who care at all about their privacy.
  • where's the line (Score:2, Insightful)

    by eric6 (126341)
    if you are required by force of law to have a license to drive, i suppose they can require ANYTHING until the trouble involved is higher than the need for a license (which would be really damn high, what with us living in cities and all).


    i don't know if this means one shouldn't need a license to drive (which seems a little reckless), but seriously, what stops Them from requiring a cavity search and your first born to get a driver's licence?

  • by wadetemp (217315) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:14PM (#3336340)
    To get my license 8 years ago, I also had some biometric information stored and I smiled for a facial recognition system.

    I distinctly remember filling out a form with my height, weight, eye and hair color. I also had to submit handwriting samples. Then, they sat me down in front of a large box and my face was scanned for these features. Everything was imprinted on a small piece of plastic which I carry with me today, and which the DMV also has a copy of.

    The facial recognition technology is still about as bad today as it was 8 years ago. I swear, that's not me.
  • by Rombuu (22914) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:16PM (#3336345)
    ...to a driver's license. If you don't like the terms to get one, don't get one. Pretty simple, really.
    • by jgerman (106518) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:38PM (#3336441)
      Fine, then refund me all of the tax money I have paid that went to fund highways and maintainence. Not to mention all the money I paid in tolls, to use a road my tax money paid for. And you had damn well better provide safe, secure, and convenient public tranportation, since you've taken mine away. Driving is a right, if for know other reason than that, the government has no right to pass out licenses, much less revoke them.
      • Good idea, but that's not how things work unfortunately - the government decides how much money you will give it, and how it will use that money, it's not like you have a say in the matter. Driving is no more a right than not having your face IDed by software wherever you go.

        The government has the right to do pretty much whatever the hell it wants, since they are the ones making up the rules as to who has what rights, for better or worse. That is, after all, the purpose of government; if you don't like how this one's handling things, well you are welcome to either try to influence it through government established channels (seems to work less and less well), move to a different place, try to forcefully overthrow it, or shut the fuck up. That's pretty much the four options available to any of us.

      • Sorry, but your argument falls flat.

        You pay taxes not simply to support your own personal use of the road system, but to support the use of that system by others, in order to benefit the Union as a whole and your State in particular through facilitated commerce and military readiness [dot.gov]. If you have a problem with that, I suggest getting enough people on your side together nd changing it-- this is a republic, after all. Just know that I'll throw my lot against you, along with everyone else who doesn't share your childish, self-centric view of government.

        Your State government does, in fact, have the right to pass out licenses or revoke them, insomuch as that power is not exclusively reserved to the Federal government by the Constitution. I know that the constitutions of Georgia and California (the two States in which I've lived) do not restrict their legislative branch from enacting licensing laws nor their executive from enforcing them. In a republican government, any power not forbidden must be assumed to be granted, as the legislature is assumed to embody the will of the people.

        You might make the argument that license requirements place undue and unconstitutional restrictions on freedom of travel, but I would wager that more legally literate people then either of us have had that argument before, and even I can see that you'd have a tough row to hoe with it.

        • You might make the argument that license requirements place undue and unconstitutional restrictions on freedom of travel, but I would wager that more legally literate people then either of us have had that argument before


          The reason that argument fails is that cars are extremely dangerous, and even with all our safety laws and regulations hundreds of thousands of people are injured and about 40 thousand are killed annually. So, the government has a compelling interest in regulating who can drive and how well trained the must be in order to protect the public. So, you're required to have a minimum level of skill and age to use a car, and you have to be able to see, and if you do something dangerous like drink and drive your license can be suspended. Its for the public safety.


          This does NOT mean that they can make arbitrary laws...for instance, I don't think a law that revoked the license of anyone who likes Barry Manilow would be ok. There must be a compelling reason for the law. This gets sticky because there could of course be an element of public safety to having everyone IDd and tracked at all times.


          But I think the important thing is does the restriction have a direct impact on safety? I don't think a retinal scan or a fingerprint is going to provide any additional safety on the roads. I dont need any of this to get a passport, which is probably the most powerful form of ID there is. Think of it like sobriety checkpoints on the road....this is an exception to the fourth amendment because it has a direct impact on road safety. But checkpoints to search your car for drugs are still illegal because it doesn't have that immediate impact.

      • Passage on roads is a right, not operating a motor vehicle. If you don't have to pass a test to get a license, then why would you have to pass a test to fly a plane? Letting unqualified drivers on the road is a threat to the safety of others.

        As for your taxes argument, most road money comes from gas taxes (39 cents of every gallon is state or federal tax in California). This is a sin tax: If you don't buy gas, you're not paying for the roads.

        Consider the smaller amount that you do pay via income and sales taxes a bargain, as they pay not for your right to drive a vehicle on these roads, but for the right of passage on them, be it as a driver, a passenger, or what have you.

        there's a big difference in saying you don't drive and saying you don't get any benefit from roads.

    • You don't have a right to eat either. But unless you advocate wholesale slaughter (you might, I can't tell) people have reason to expect that there be some reasonable way to acquire food. Deny that, and expect quite an increase in theft, murder, arson, vandalism, burgulary, etc. ending in insurrection.

      Now the government has the troops, so they'd probably win, but it wouldn't be much fun fot the citizenry.

      Put another way, rights is mystical gibberish used as PR by a bunch of 17th century radicals to justify the radical political platform that they created. And they swiped it from an earlier bunch of authoritarian bastards who said that god gave the guy with the biggest army the right to rule. (Notice how the sounds exactly like the line that the "Social Darwinists" try to push, only blaming Darwin instead of god. [That isn't a question, it's an instruction.])

      The guys in charge always try to say that what they are trying to do/control/... is Right! Would you expect them to say it was wrong? They know good PR from bad PR. (Well, at least most of them do.)

      Anytime someone starts talking about rights, try to understand what they are really saying. Someone is pulling the wool over someone's eyes, and you don't want the be among those played for a sucker.

      Constitutional right has a definite (if arguable) meaning. Right as an unqualified abstract would only have a meaning if you could summon the god of your choice to come down and testify about it in public. (2nd or 3rd hand reports don't count.)

      So if one person asserts that driving is a right and another denies it, there is no way to evaluate those claims. They're both just spouting hot air.
  • by crimoid (27373) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:26PM (#3336387)
    From the article:

    The state also has also exercised the option to utilize biometric features with the new Digitized Driver License system given the need for greater security since September 11. It has become evident that the driver's license is now a critical identification document.

    Thats all well and good, but unless someone checking the ID (ticket counter at the airport) has some means of utilizing the new features to positively identify someone the features become usless. The person checking the ID must then (as always) check photo ID.

    You can implement all the new features you want, but unless everyone has access to card readers, scanners or whatever gadget is used to utilize biometric information the features don't amount to squat.
  • Like, for example, here in south carolina. Except, here, they don't tell you that they are doing it. At least you in conneticut have the privelege of knowing what rights you are losing; here, they never mentioned it. PS: new system has been in place for several months.
  • by J. J. Ramsey (658) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:32PM (#3336414) Homepage
    Your picture is taken so that human beings can recognize your face. The main difference I see here is that computer software is used to recognize your face rather than humans. There are still some potential problems, such as the Connecticut DMV thinking the software is more reliable that it is, but I don't think it's quite the coming of Big Brother yet.
    • The difference is that the authorities can't use a computer to see into your pocket and get all your personal information (name, address, SS#, etc), however they can set up video cameras everywhere, even in public. and scan your face and have all that info and more.

      Do you think the government should know where you are at all times? That's what they're shooting for.
    • I agree. There's no consequential difference between computer technology and old analog equivalents.

      I mean, can you believe some people bother with all this digital stuff, much less argue -- and I'm not making this up -- they argue over which operating system to use? Why doesn't Malda just make Slashdot a dry erase board on his front door?

      Seriously, this argument comes up all the time. Slashdot users actually argue that technological change doesn't matter? Hey, why don't we legalize machine guns? I don't see how this is much different than other weapons, which have been legal for thousands of years.

      end of rant.
      • There's no consequential difference between computer technology and old analog equivalents.

        On the off chance that your post isn't some kind of subtle, ironic humor that has eluded me, there's a huge differences between computer technology and analog in the situation: economy, obedience, and networking.

        Now that you've got a network of surveillance cameras, is it cheaper to have humans watch them or computers? Computers can do the work 24 hours a day, do the work faster, and do the work without distraction.

        Ask a computer to do something that is morally questionable, like restroom surveillance, and it'll do what you tell it. Try getting human operators to do that.

        If a human operator spots someone suspicious on camera, they probably don't know who they are to look up further details. If they do know the suspect, they still need to interface with a computer to access additional information (e.g., any outstanding warrants). A computer can handle all these things automatically:

        1. Camera gives computer location and face.
        2. Face matches DMV record, gives address, SS#, etc.
        3. Records from DMV connect to law enforcement, warrants found, law enforcement dispatched.

        All that while suspect is still in front of same camera. Try expecting that performance from analog face recognition. No consequential difference, indeed!

  • by hobbs (82453) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:32PM (#3336419)
    The issue of better identification of people comes up again and again, but I always have to wonder - what criminal acts are these guys planning that they protest so loudly to being able to be identified by the authorities?

    Let's look at this another way. I don't worry about the government knowing that I exist, how tall I am, what color my eyes are, or how many whirls and whorls my thumbprint has. I'm not a criminal. I don't plan on being one.

    However, for those that do enjoy the occasional snatch & grab, if the police really had everyones fingerprints and pictures in a big database, don't you think that would reduce a lot of crime? And I don't mean just because they'd catch a lot more people - it would serve as an effective deterrent to crime, which seems to be in short supply nowadays.

    So go ahead, fingerprint everybody. Take a DNA sample. If it means that 20 years from now, my children will be growing up in a society free of random murders, pedophilia, assault, and all the rest, I'm for it. That's idealistic, but I'll take just 20%.
    • by BoyPlankton (93817) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:54PM (#3336510) Homepage
      The issue of better identification of people comes up again and again, but I always have to wonder - what criminal acts are these guys planning that they protest so loudly to being able to be identified by the authorities?

      I dunno about you, but if I was planning on committing a crime and I knew that my photo/fingerprints were on record, which they are, then I would just wear a mask and gloves to get past those obstacles.

      While I understand your point of view, I don't think that the question should be "what criminal acts are these guys planning that they protest so loudly to being able to be identified by the authorities?" I think the question should be, "what crime did I commit to warrant being treated like a criminal?"

      However, for those that do enjoy the occasional snatch & grab, if the police really had everyones fingerprints and pictures in a big database, don't you think that would reduce a lot of crime? And I don't mean just because they'd catch a lot more people - it would serve as an effective deterrent to crime, which seems to be in short supply nowadays.

      It would also reduce alot of crime if the government implanted chips in our skin that relayed our exact location to a police computer at all times. That way they'd have no problem pinpointing who committed the crime. For some odd reason I believe that's a bad idea too.
      • Well, check out the Verichip [biometritech.com], which just sailed PAST the FDA, because they decided it was not a health issue.

        Right, a computer chip embedded in the body is NOT a health issue. No, we don't need studies done on that, right? It's perfectly healthy, the company building it has told us that, so why should we question it?

        A radio-frequency chip embedded in the body needs no study whatsoever, this has nothing to do with the gov't pushing technology through in the name of "security" without any concern for the well-being of its citizens. Hell, if we start to die off earlier, we're less of a burden on social security.

        Which, of course, will be non-existent by the time most of the /. population will need it, but of course that's of less concern to our "elected officials" than making sure they have EVERY AMERICAN CITIZEN FINGERPRINTED like a common criminal.
    • Oh you are to a criminal. everyone is on some level. but in the future, with your ideas, every criminal will be caught. Every time you exceed the speed limit, ticketed. There are laws you are probably breaking everyday that you dont even realize, and most others dont
    • by startled (144833) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @06:51PM (#3336717)
      it means that 20 years from now, my children will be growing up in a society free of random murders, pedophilia, assault, and all the rest, I'm for it.

      That's a good point-- and that's why so many of these things get through. But what else is illegal? Distributing DeCSS, apparently. Giving a lecture on flaws in the latest digital watermarking scheme. In the past, it has been effectively illegal to espouse Communist values, or to be Japanese and not in a camp.

      The more power you give the government, the more extreme these laws get. Maybe it'll be illegal to criticize the president, or write a program to copy bits without government-approved copy protection built in (but hey, now I'm just getting way outside the realm of possibility).

      I'm happy to give up some power to a central government-- because, like you said, I much prefer a society without murder and assault. But it's incredibly naive to believe that the government will use any power you give it responsibly. There's plenty of corruption now-- and it increases the more power they get.
    • The issue of better identification of people comes up again and again, but I always have to wonder - what criminal acts are these guys planning that they protest so loudly to being able to be identified by the authorities?

      Hey, you're right. And since only criminals would object to having a tracking chip implanted in their arms, let's mandate that as well. After all, what do you have to hide? If you object you must be a criminal.

      While we're at it, let's also ban any sort of privacy in communication. Only criminals want the ability to privately communicate with others, so why don't we just legalize wiretapping, opening mail, and loading surveillance software on everyone's computer?

      Hell, let's go the full distance: let's put little cameras in everyone's home. After all, if we're good, law-abiding citizens we won't mind if government records what we do; only criminals would object to such measures. If anyone objects or starts spouting off about privacy - how 20th century! - then we'll know right away that those sorts are up to no good.

      Yeah, this is surely the kind of world I want to live in. Definitely the kind of world I want my kids to grow up in. After all, if it lowers the crime rate by some small fraction, if it's "fooor the chiiiiiilldrenn", then honest upright folks will embrace it without question. Only criminals would object, and those who object, by definition, are criminals.

      Take a DNA sample. If it means that 20 years from now, my children will be growing up in a society free of random murders, pedophilia, assault, and all the rest, I'm for it.

      Provide a single empirical cite which indicates that these measures will do any of this. Just one.

      Max
    • So go ahead, fingerprint everybody. Take a DNA sample. If it means that 20 years from now, my children will be growing up in a society free of random murders, pedophilia, assault, and all the rest, I'm for it. That's idealistic, but I'll take just 20%.

      If we could do this kind of thing effectively, we would be able to ensure that only those favored by the government could rape, assault and murder your children, and that your children couldn't do anything about it, if they objected to these rapes, murders, and assaults. That's a great tradeoff, I think; give up all remnants of human dignity, and everything which makes life worth living, and get abused, enslaved, robbed and murdered by the very organization you gave this up to.

      If we can learn anything from history, it's that Lord Acton was right: absolute power absolutely will corrupt.

      Ironically, criminals have relatively little to fear from this kind of thing. They seem to be able to ply their trade without much difficulty under all circumstances. Some of the dumb ones get hung when a police state decides to get rid of the competition, but the bright criminals just join the gang with the badges. We need to make sure that the cops don't become the gang with the badges.

      I am not a criminal either, and I therefore object to being treated as if I were a criminal. You might think that increasing your safety by twenty percent makes it all worth while, and you might think that these proposals will deliver that. Think about this: if treating us like criminals really slowed the criminals down, then you would feel quite safe as a prisoner in a U.S. jail. Do you really think that you would be safer in prison than in your home? The incidence of violent crime is quite high in prison, and the folks there are really treated like prisoners. We could strip search you every day before you leave the house, and afterwards too, and you won't be any safer. But, we will have made the cops into the gang with the badges.

  • by Titusdot Groan (468949) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:40PM (#3336448) Journal
    Wow, when I read biometric data I had images of fingerprinting, retinal scanning and a dna sample. Nope, just a picture and demographic data. Is this a slippery slope concern or just a massive over-reaction?

    As licenses get used increasingly for proof of identity we can only expect this kind of increase in the security of the id cards.

    Up here in Ontario we've been doing this for years for drivers licenses and government health cards. So far there hasn't been any use of the data (that I know of) for anything other than printing the photo id cards.

    The battle to be fought here is not to prevent these cards from existing, it's going to happen. Work on ensuring that the cards are only proof of identity and are not connected in every which way to every database in existance. Fight for an internally consistent card that only proves you are who you claim to be, then every other database can just look you up. Fight against the shared databases not against the cards themselves.

    For instance the Canadian Federal government put together a big database [hackcanada.com] tracking all sorts of personal information about every Canadian tax payer -- they can do this with out without id cards.

    The war for anonymity was lost on September 11th. Those of us concerned about privacy didn't get to the field. Fall back and fight for real privacy.

    And remember folks, nobody listens to the people wearing the tin foil hats!

    • To you it looks like a photo. To the computer it looks a bit different. Otherwise they could just scan in the photo and work from there.

      Actually, a fingerprint system is much less obnoxious than the camera based systems. The camera based systems allow 30 false positives to be picked out of a football crowd. The fingerprint system doesn't. Well, ok, that's (I think) a rhetorical exaggeration. But the game was in Florida. And the technology is new, so the false positives should go down. But this is of concern because it further increases the imbalance of power between the individual and the government. It's poor forecasting to just look at one point in time and say: "This is what the effects will be." In Britain and Florida these cameras are common on street corners. How long until they use the system to track drivers who run red lights? (Hint: they've already tried. It hasn't yet worked, but they've tried.)
      How long until they use it to track, O, litterbugs, loiterers, loonies, ...
      Now extend it to other letters of the alphabet....
      Until you find yourself (if you didn't, then you are fooling yourself).

      When these systems are put in place the assertion is always that they will only be used against serious crime. Anyone who believes it almost deserves the penalty that they will receive. But not quite. And the pain falleth on the just and the unjust alike.

      Don't expect the first version to work right. Expect lots of bugs. Expect the pr to say "Gee, what a waste of money!" (Or some other dismissive incantation.) Then expect it to fade from notice. But not from existence. And systems tend to extend themselves. (This kind of system is run and justified by bureaucrats, so all of Parkinson's laws apply.)
  • by peter hoffman (2017) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:42PM (#3336454) Homepage

    A driver's license wasn't always required. The first states to require a driver's license were Massachusetts and Missouri in 1903. However, it wasn't until the 1950s that all states required road test and/or examination in order to get a license (reference [dot.gov]). Somehow the world managed to survive those 40 odd years of unlicensed drivers.

    Most people don't have any inkling as to how how much the world has changed in the last 50 years (or 100 years for those of you over 50). Politicians today can get elected on platforms that would have had them run out of town on a rail only 30 years ago.

    In the future people watching old movies won't understand the terror implicit in the phrase "ver are your paperz!". They won't recognize that phrase as being fundamentally un-American.

    Revisionist history will make sure they aren't even taught that things were ever any different. Revisionist history may not even include a mention of Washington, Jefferson, or Franklin [declaration.net].

    If some people get their way [com.com] you won't even be able to teach yourself history. All that you will know are the "facts" The State has approved for your consumption.

    The sad thing is that already anyone who points these things out is derided as a nut.

    • Reading the Washington, Jefferson, Franklin [declaration.net] link was an eye-opener. The only thing that bothers me about Dr. Seeley is the way he constantly thanks God for the things that dedicated people are doing.

      Thank God defenders of American tradition were not asleep...

      We should indeed thank God for Cardinale and Pennachio...

      We should also thank God that Cardinale and Pennachio are not alone. Their compatriots have been at work improving history standards in states like Texas, Florida, Ohio and California...


      Now, I realize the guy's with a Catholic organization of some sort, but really: don't Cardinale and Pennachio and all "their compatriots" deserve some of the credit?
    • The sad thing is that already anyone who points these things out is derided as a nut.

      I don't think that is true. For example, I think that if you had simply put the first two paragraphs of your post, and no other, they would be completely reasonable.

      But once you start comparing having to get a driver's license to anything the Gestapo did, and refer to "the State", then things start sounding a little nutty. Sorry, but it's true.

      Does that make you a nut, or everyone else in the world a nut? I don't know, you could be right and the rest of the world wrong; as Winston Smith said, "Sanity is not statistical." But if you want to convince anyone else of your position, you need to not sound like an ideologue.

      • The problem is that totalitarian states don't spring into existence fully formed. They evolve one step at a time and at each step people say "that sounds reasonable, after all it's for our safety". Very often the people are right, each step in of itself is reasonable. The danger comes from the long term trend which can cause a country to quietly slide in real trouble.

        My observation about driver's licenses is intended to cause people to examine how this country has changed over the last 50 or 100 years and to think about what the general trend has been. Perhaps things that are being proposed today and which seem reasonable on the surface shouldn't be supported after all. Perhaps the apparent gain isn't really worth the loss.

        Revisionist history gets involved not because I think there is an organized plot to control people's minds but because people need to understand that history is not immutable. Just because you read it in an "real" textbook doesn't make it true.

        Textbooks are chosen to satisfy a constituency. That constituency is largely comfortable with the current common view of the world. If the current view is that we should all have a national id complete with biometric information then there is a risk that anyone who suggested otherwise (Orwell perhaps?) will be quietly dropped from the curriculum.

        The result is the danger Santayana warned of: those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them.

    • George Washington...

      I think I might have heard the name. Was he Martha Washington's husband?
  • Watch as.... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by loteck (533317) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @05:54PM (#3336511) Homepage

    this post's mod drops like a plane with an afghani pilot.

    There are serious issues surrounding the legalities of a drivers license. There is a strong relationship to between the drivers license and the SSN (social securit number), the latter of which is not required of you to possess (but good luck trying to live without one).

    It comes down to definitions. Words like "travel", "automobile", "motor vehicle", and amoung the most important, "driver". IANAL, but you have to understand that when you enter into the realm of law, you dont just have "general meanings" for words. They are each defined very strictly, and are often redefined in various sections so as not to have any confusion as to where or to whom the law applies.

    "Motor Vehicle" is an important one. Definition in Title 18 USC 31 - "Motor vehicle" means every description or other contrivance propelled or drawn by mechanical power and used for commercial purposes on the highways in the transportation of passengers, or passengers and property."

    "Driver" is another one, definition from Bovier's Law Dictionary - "One employed in conducting a coach, carriage, wagon, or other vehicle..."

    You'll notice that both of these definitions include mention of the thing in question (a Motor Vehicle or a Driver) involved in some form of commericial business. The argument exists, in what may people think as extremists circles, that licensing, by law, is only required for those who wish to use the public roads for commercial use.

    So notice you are getting a "Driver's License" at the "Motor Vehicle Division", and you are not getting a "Traveler's License" at the "Automobile Division". Traveler and Automobile.. very different defintions on those 2 words than on the previous 2.

    So you have "extremist" views [icx.net] and you have people who try to debunk them (cant find a legitimate link right now, but they most definitely exist). The difference seems to be one group is actively reading the laws and applying them (how dare they), and one group is saying "these guys are idiots, OF COURSE everyone has to have licenses, thats how we've done it for YEARS, so it MUST BE RIGHT!!!"

    So again, there are lots of issues surrounding the driver's license. As one previous poster put it, if you dont like the requirements to get one, dont get one. But then life actually becomes hard, and no one wants life to be hard...

    --- Check out this guy who lives a (semi)normal life without a Social Security Number [mindspring.com].

    • Re:Watch as.... (Score:3, Interesting)

      by BCoates (512464)
      "Motor Vehicle" is an important one. Definition in Title 18 USC 31 - "Motor vehicle" means every description or other contrivance propelled or drawn by mechanical power and used for commercial purposes on the highways in the transportation of passengers, or passengers and property."

      That makes sense, as that's a defintion from federal law, which has the power to regulate interstate commerce--so federal motor vehicle law generally only covers commercial vehicles. (i'm ignoring federal safety/environmental laws here, but those are usually just funding tie-ins to coerce the States into passing conforming state laws.)

      You don't have to have a federal driver's licence, if such a thing exists it's only for semi-truck drivers and the like, not personal vehicles.

      Looking at state law, this is from the California Vehicle Code:

      415. (a) A "motor vehicle" is a vehicle that is self-propelled.

      (b) "Motor vehicle" does not include a self-propelled wheelchair, invalid tricycle, or motorized quadricycle when operated by a person who, by reason of physical disability, is otherwise unable to move about as a pedestrian.

      "Driver" is another one, definition from Bovier's Law Dictionary - "One employed in conducting a coach, carriage, wagon, or other vehicle..."

      'employed in' here most likely means 'performing the action of', not 'is hired to'. The language in that sentence is pretty crusty...

      --
      Benjamin Coates
    • Did you even read that mindspring link? That guy is one of those people that believes in things like issuing sight drafts against your "government collateral".

      He is a victim of a group of scam artists that operates just below the surface of society, bent on taking advantage of people who already distrust the government.

      He was already running into problems with his illegal behavior, encouraged by the scam artists, in late 1998, I wouldn't be surprised if the entries stopped there because he found himself in jail after that.
  • Joe Lieberman.

    why do i think he's responsible for this?
  • Solution (Score:5, Funny)

    by glowingspleen (180814) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @06:01PM (#3336544) Homepage
    Just squinch your face up. Sure you'll have a wacky license picture, but you'll stay anonymous on the cameras...
  • by bjanz (573487) <bhjanz@@@ccsneinc...com> on Saturday April 13, 2002 @06:15PM (#3336589) Homepage
    Hi folks. Subject line is *fact*. I developed the central image server and was the lead engineer on Polaroid's implementation of the WV DMV DL/ID system. WV uses *both* fingerprint *and* facial image recognition. Fingerprints are optional, but the facial image recognition is used on *all* applicants. The FIR system can be *tuned* to reduce both "false negative" and "false positive" results. The facial image is stored - it's needed to print the license and verify the user for the next issuance. I'm willing to write an article on the subject, if there's any interest. Email me at bjanz@bit-net.com. And, if you're interested, I can provide names who will verify that I did indeed run the WV and Indiana projects. \burt
  • by flacco (324089) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @06:16PM (#3336602)
    This whole "freedom" concept was useful as long as we needed something to hold up to shame our communist enemies. Now that they are gone, this "freedom" pretense is expendable.

    Line up for your tattoos, workers. Time to brand some cattle. Shut up and don't complain, or we'll ship your jobs to those former communist states where labor is real cheap.

    Well, we're going to do that anyway, but no need to tell you now.

  • What's new here?!? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Debillitatus (532722) <devillel2@CHICAGOhotmail.com minus city> on Saturday April 13, 2002 @06:19PM (#3336610) Journal
    I'm imagining that over the next few hours, we'll see the traditional /. backlash that we're expecting, hear the words "Big Brother" about a thousand times, etc.

    But my question is, what is new here?

    For example, in every state that I've lived and gotten a driver's license in, I was required to submit all of this information. I had to give biometric information, my NY state driver's licence has my height and eye-color, and other states have required my weight, and so on. Also, every driver's license I've ever had has a picture on it, which was digitized and entered into a database.

    I can understand your position if you think that it's a violation of privacy for you to have to submit to a picture, and to give basic biometric information. I disagree, but I can understand where you're coming from... But, if this is your position, then it must be true that the current situation was intolerable to you. Anyone who thinks that this new development is somehow different than the current situation is just having a knee-jerk reaction.

    • There's a big difference between height, weight, hair color, etc... and a fingerprint or (if it worked) face biometric. The former (and the photo) make it nontrivial for one person to use another's licence, but they aren't enough to uniquely identify someone in an automated fashion--the police don't go get a printout of everyone 6'1" 210lbs brown hair/brown eyes when someone of that description commits a crime because they'd get a uselessly long list.

      But a fingerprint can be lifted from a crime scene and be matched to one or a few people with relative ease... For me, it's not so much as a fourth-amendment type privacy concern as it is forcing me to assist in my own prosecution, violating the spirit, if not the letter, of the fifth amendment.

      --
      Benjamin Coates
  • I will be able to sleep much more soundly now knowing that I'll never have to worry about those damn Conneticut terrorists hijacking airplanes ever again!

    Seriously folks, we already know that this face-recognition garbage doesn't work [computerworld.com] anyway...
  • by JoeShmoe (90109) <askjoeshmoe@hotmail.com> on Saturday April 13, 2002 @06:23PM (#3336630)
    You know, I think everyone who takes the stance that "driving is a privaledge, not a right" is flat out wrong. I belive that driving is a right. I believe that it is just as important as the right to bear arms. The only reason that it isn't explicitly spelled out in the US Constitution is because the technology just didn't exist. The forefathers couldn't have conceived of a world where the government could somehow prevented them from using a horse.

    But ask yourself...what would happen if the procedures that applied to cars were applied to cars? You want a gun? First take a mandatory training class. Now get a practice gun that says you can only use a gun within a shooting range for a year. Now fork over your complete life's history, DNA, fingerprint, whatever to become a registered gun owner. Now be required to get gun insurance in order to purchase a gun. Now get a ticket for not keeping your gun stored in the proper location. Now have your gun impounded and lose your gun license for getting too many tickets.

    That's what we would have if guns were given the same treatment under the law as cars. Yet you won't see that happen. Even thought a lot of those things are probably a sensible idea! They are adding to the burden of gun ownership which directly violates the second ammendmant.

    Now I ask you, which is more important, a gun or a car? Back in the 1700's, you have to pretty much to with gun. A gun could provide food for your family. A gun could protect you from robbers and highwaymen. A gun could protect you from wild animals. A gun could make sure that your newly formed government didn't decide to come and oppress you (or at least do so over your dead body). A gun put you on equal terms with the lawmakers...as long as the numbers of you outnumbered the numbers of them.

    Today in the year 2002...which is more important, a gun or a car? A car provides me with a means to earn a living at a job that might be otherwise out of my range of trave...a car provides food for my family. A car gives me the ability to flee danger should I live in a remote area...a car protects me from robber. A car gives me a secure mode of transportation through dark and troublesome terrain...it afford me protection from wild animals I wouldn't have walking. A car allows me to escape from a situation where I am being persecuted...a car protects me from n oppressive government. A car puts me on equal terms with those in authority...as long as I keep driving until they stop following.

    Everyone is fooling themselves into believing you don't need a car in today's society. Walk, ride a bike, take a bus. But if push came to shove, what of those options will save you from any of the terrors I mentioned above? Would we all sleep easy if cars were outlawed entirely and we were forced to use a public transportation system? Go only when and where they allow us to go? Allow our movements to be tracked from start to finish? This is the future that "driving is a privaledge" is heading us towards.

    Stop it people, for the love of god, stop it. A car and a gun are both useful tools, that happen to have the side effect of being capable of causing damage and carnage. But there is no deny the benefit they both provide to our society. The tables have turned...I can pretty much get along without a gun in the yer 2000...the same way someone who carefully arranges their life can get along without a car. But I'm sure glad that if the situation were to change...if my wife were being stalked, or some hoodlums were hanging around my neighborhood...I can count on the fact that I can be guaranteed a means of protecting myself. Why on earth shouldn't the same be true for a car?

    - JoeShmoe

    .
    • The forefathers couldn't have conceived of a world where the government could somehow prevented them from using a horse.

      Don't be absurd. These men were not writing in the Stone Age, and they showed remarkable foresight and solid understanding of the perpetuity of their acts; go read some of their writings, and then come back and tell us that they couldn't possibly have conceived of some oppressive act by a government.

      In regard to your gun/car analogy, you've thrown in the subject of utility as if it has something to do with the Second Amendment. It doesn't. The point of the "right to bear arms" clause is to provide an additional safeguard against usurpation of government power, embodied in the militias controlled by each State. Again, you might want to do some reading... The Federalist No. 46, by Madison, would be worth a look. (Incidentally, in all of the Federalist papers, utility of weaponry for purposes of hunting and self-defense is never mentioned.)

      Driving is a privilege. I agree with you that this type of data collection is a step in the wrong direction, but using such fallacious arguments does not help your case in opposing it.

    • Almost got me on this one. A little too long though :) Started to get bored and therefore began to actually think about what you were proposing...

      The reason that our forefathers saw it necessary to provide explicit protection for the right to bear arms was in order to make sure that people had a means to overthrow the government should the government become tyrannical. This is why the 4th ammendment contains the "well-regulated militia" clause. They didn't intend for any bum to run around with a gun, but instead wanted to make sure that a community could create a militia in order to defend themselves (which the British weren't allowing them to do).

      For those who responded that our forefathers were very insightful, well, that isn't entirely true. A lot of what is contained in the bill of rights is very specific (such as the 3nd ammendment - quartering of troops) or my personal favorite, the $20 figure of the 7th ammendment.

      I dunno, I find it hard to belief that driving a car in an inalienable right. Being secure in one's possessions is though so I definitely think that the handling of private material should be severely - and publicly - auditted to ensure our privacy.

      Good try, but no dice man.
  • Europe (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ZaneMcAuley (266747) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @06:34PM (#3336664) Homepage Journal
    We already have photo's, signatures etc on our licences, they change nearly every year. We use a european model licence (and passport) for every member state. Soon it will include (if not already) a chip on it. So what. It makes my live easier when travelling around europe having this single model. To get this kind of technology accepted, they are marketing it using the FAST TRACK approach. i.e., you get through checks faster at airports etc if you have this that or the other kind of ID.
  • Then remove them after the picture. The human face is a lot more variable then face recogition will allow for.

    I wonder how long it will be before American Indian style war paint becomes both a fashion statement, a count measure and a act of defiance.

  • Rights/Disclosure (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Skrap (105397)
    A question which I don't think has been asked enough is "Do we have a right to know what is being done with our information?". When medical surveys are conducted, they survey-takers are required by law to disclose what information is being taken and for what purpose the information will be used. Shouldn't government be held to the same standard? I'd feel better about handing my info over if I knew that it wasn't going to be used to track my movements, or in some other underhanded way.

    Are there any medical professionals out there who know the details of what is required of medical research in terms of informed consent of the subjects? Also, why that consent is required, and can that be applied in this case?

    Just curious...
  • I don't know much about them, but maybe you can get one of those.
  • A New World (Score:4, Insightful)

    by circletimessquare (444983) <circletimessquar ... m minus language> on Saturday April 13, 2002 @07:25PM (#3336836) Homepage Journal
    A lot of these arguments I see here are wonderfully coherent arguments pre-September 11th. But unfortunately, they are all rather knee-jerk reactions after September 11th, because they are spoken in a vacuum that ignores the reality we live in today.

    A show of hands for how many people think we have eliminated the networks that planned September 11th? Am I scare-mogering? By invoking September 11th am I calling upon Fear, Uncertainty, Denial to serve the interests of those who wish to destroy our freedoms? Am I an apologist for the future Stalin/ Hitler/ Pol Pot in our midst? By my arguments am I destroying our freedoms in order to protect them? Knee-jerk territory my friends, knee-jerk reaction. It is almost eight months, no more (!), since September 11th, and y'all are going about your thought processes in complete denial, aren't you?

    There is a difference between explaining a situation and excusing a situation, so those of you who tend toward paranoid schizophrenia, please don't attack me personally if you reply, try to keep it above the belt and reply to the substance of what I am trying to say, and here it is:

    The West has a problem. A huge one. Our current state of national existence is living under a threat to our security that has never existed beforehand in our history. Before September 11th, George Bush was seen as a buffoon. Now he enjoys wonderful ratings and is seen as a hero. Why? Human psychology, my friends. The USA, en masse, is rallying around the commander in chief. It is circling the wagons. You don't attack those who would defend you. The US Government was an overtaxing bloated bureaucratic anachronism before September 11th. Now, they are our saviors.

    Again don't attack me, I am explaining the psychology in the US to those of you chronically out of touch with the reality we live in today- I am not excusing it, get it? Because a herd of buffalo, once it starts charging, has no intelligence, and will trample the fields that feed it just because somebody fired a few rounds by their flanks. Many decades hence, if we remove a lot of our own rights, there may be a lot of regret about our reaction to September 11th, but right now, we are in the thick of it. People are afraid.

    So what am I saying? Y'all sound rather hollow, ok? Because you offer no protection from the kind of folks who committed September 11th. You invoke theories and possibilities of a police state, but the democratic tradition in this country is strong and deep, and the terrorists are REAL and in our midst, plotting our doom. You stand in the way of a herd of trampling buffalo, and you shout slogans that mean nothing to the mob before you, running over their own rights.

    Folks, if you want to protect our freedoms, you have to find new arguments, that is all I am saying, and here is the kicker- you have to invoke those arguments that address the real problem: not our freedom, but our safety! I am with y'all, but I'm just saying: NO ONE IS LISTENING TO YOU. YOU SOUND TIRED AND SHRILL. I agree with you that our rights are in jeopardy, and they need to be saved, but you are doing nothing to appease the approaching mob who will trample our freedom in the name of our safety, get it? THEY DON'T CARE ABOUT THEIR FREEDOM THEY CARE ABOUT THEIR SAFETY. YOU MUST ADDRESS THIS.

    "Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
    --Benjamin Franklin, 1759

    Gee what a wonderful quote. Any volunteers to write this on a big banner and hold it up in front of a herd of charging buffalo? I didn't think so.

    People are scared. They are covering their asses, they are not listening with their ears wide open and their minds in full-tilt. They are scared. You must invoke arguments that include their safety, because none of you do, and safety is what the herd of buffalo is worried most about.

    • What a diatribe. Well, I feel admonished, but how are we going to come up with arguments that sound pro-safety? The best we've come up with so far is pointing out the fact that these new gestapo-like measures won't actually increase our safety.

      Hey, I've got it. We're being too honest. The other side - Congress, the FBI, etc. - aren't afraid to bend the truth a bit to set their arguments in a pro-safety light. We should be just as dishonest and sensationalist right back at them.

      I can just see it now: "Terrorists tracking us with our faces!" "Criminals using government backdoors to steal your identity!" Don't get all high and mighty on me, it'd work.

      • Re:A New World (Score:2, Interesting)

        The best we've come up with so far is pointing out the fact that these new gestapo-like measures won't actually increase our safety.

        Two things:

        1. It will increase our safety, but at the cost of our liberties. The question is, how to increase our safety without sacrificing our liberties. It is an honest question. A diatribe? Well, you are right, it was a diatribe too. ;-P

        2. People are so damn quick to invoke Hitler, Pol Pot, Stalin, etc. Uhh... no one is saying you have to wear a yellow star of david on your driver's license and the word "Juden." You are in knee-jerk territory again. I am asking for new arguments, not old ones. In addition, that is fear-mongering. FUD does not help you, since you are trying to fight FUD, which you are saying is being used to rob you of your rights. So why are you using FUD again? What purpose are you serving? Interesting how that works, doesn't it.

        Hey, I've got it. We're being too honest. The other side - Congress, the FBI, etc. - aren't afraid to bend the truth a bit to set their arguments in a pro-safety light. We should be just as dishonest and sensationalist right back at them.

        Oops, I guess you answered #2. Should have read your entire post first. Not much to say now, as you've heeded the call, and joined the dark side.

  • There might be some good benefits from biometric image databases. There are a lot of advantages would could attain if we have a quick and easy way to authenticate ourselves. The programs might help reduce identity theft, credit card fraud and other problems.

    I agree that in the present state of affairs, the overwhelming tendency is for governments and corporations to pigeon hole people and reduce freedoms, but the technology itself is not inherently evil.

    If the biometric systems evolve into open systems, where people can see who accesses their information and when, then we will probably benefit from the technology. If there is a self-appointed elite group that controls the information, then we will be worse off.
  • by Medievalist (16032) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @07:44PM (#3336895)
    /.
    Go to Spencer's, get one of those packs of temporary tattoos, put several on your face, and when they ask you about them stare coldly (or chuckle jovially, whichever makes them feel more like Nazi interogators) and ask them if there is a law against tattoos.

    Don't admit they are temporary and don't let them touch you (but be courteous at all times).

    Put some cotton wadding in your cheeks, too. Not a lot, though - you want humans to be able to ID you from your drivers' license.

    --Charlie
  • by aquarian (134728) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @08:17PM (#3336995)
    Biometric information for drivers' licenses is not new- the last couple of times at least, I've had to give fingerprints when renewing my CA license. So this has been around for at least 10 years. Why all the hoopla now? There's no difference between giving fingerprints, retina scans, facial scans, or whatever, only that the latter are more efficient.
  • by AugstWest (79042) on Saturday April 13, 2002 @08:26PM (#3337018)
    I really didn't think /. was going to accept this story when I submitted it, largely becuase it has already happened in many more states than just Connecticut.

    My wife writes Biometritech [biometritech.com], and she's the one who pointed this out to me, among many other very frightening similar stories, and she's telling me that this has already happened in Mississippi, Virginia and several other states, with more to come.

    Iris scanning is already being done in airports in the US, and it will only spread further. According to her, Kennedy and Dulles airports have already implemented iris scanning. It's like getting fingerprinted to get on a plane, only more definitively.

    The only comfort that I can find in this is that it's all being implemented by the government. Well, more to the point, it isn't even "just the government," it's the DMV.

    I feel a small sense of comfort in knowing that it's the most ineffective organization known to mankind that is trying to implement this, but that sense of comfort is somewhat negated by the knowledge that it will only take one or two individuals to abuse this sort of thing for their own gains. (it's also somewhat negated by having seen Brazil [imdb.com], a Terry Gilliam movie which you owe it to yourself to see if you have any feelings on this issue whatsoever

    Which, honestly, is the only reason to get into politics to begin with.

    Here's a direct quote from a report called "Child Support Enforcement: Most States Collect Drivers' Social Security Numbers and Use Them to Enforce Child Support", which was a government study into what kind of implications could come out of linking driver's licenses with social security numbers -- which were, of course, a well-minded government plan to identify indivudals only for social security payment reasons, which was at one point the only allowable argument for allowing the identification of individual American citizen by a number.

    Here's the quote:

    State officials and privacy experts we spoke with generally did not express privacy concerns regarding the policy that MVAs collect SSNs for child support enforcement. Although many of these individuals did express concern about the increased dissemination of SSNs throughout society, most did not extend this concern to MVA-collected SSNs. However, the report went on to state: Privacy, however, can be compromised if SSNs are not properly safeguarded. Our survey of MVAs indicates potential weaknesses in this area.

    (for more on this, see this article [biometritech.com])

    Who will have access to the DMV databases? There is no answer available to this question. How well will it be secured? While the state will give you one answer, the answer will not come from the individuals actually doing the securing, it will come from talking heads whose job it is to convince us that it will be well secured. God only knows if these individuals will be using MS SQL (we are talking about state employees here) who may not even think twice about using "sa" and a blank password for securing the database, nevermind disabling the dozens of insecure stored procedures install by default.

    In the past several months, we've seen MASSIVE sharing of databases among federal, county and municipal law-enforcement agencies, and while the afore-mentioned "sense of comfort" from the fact that this is nothing but fairly incompentent government agencies trying to build a massive system, it's still creepy to anyone who has read and absorbed 1984.

    There is a potential here for a system in which a government employee can wonder "where is Joe Schmoe right now," and simply enter Joe Schmoe's social security number into a pleasant little VB application, which can query a database to find the most recent image of Joe Schmoe's last appearance in front of a camera anywhere in the nation.

    I can see the argument of "what does this matter as long a you're not breaking any laws, but i still will argue that the government should not have this ability. Every fiber of my being tells me that this is just plain wrong.

    Orwell may not have gotten the date quite right, but his premonitions seem to be fairly well backed up by the current path of privacy invasions.
  • Its going to be YOUR licence for REAL. Nobody will EVER be able to steal your wallet or car and get into some form of legal shit and stick YOU in it.

    Biometrics is security based on what you ARE not what you (and anybody else can) know.

    I'm a shit-load more paranoid about 'em NOT using biometrics and making all kinds of (in)human errors.
  • Mass Transit (Score:2, Insightful)

    by EEBaum (520514)
    Yet another reason we need a better mass transit and long-distance-train system in the U.S.
  • in the sixties and early seventies called "The Price for Security if Freedom."

    Fact is that in the 'States, you have the perfect to privacy on your OWN property. In most other places in this world, you don't even have that. If somebody can see in, they can see in. That's IT.

    You DON'T have ANY rights anywhere else.

    You NEVER DID. Specially on some public commons.
    Yes... You ARE being watched so don't be ashamed of anything you do and don't do anything you'd be ashamed of because you ARE being watched.

    At least the system in the 'States is not preemptive. You CAN go out to rob a liquor store or murder the neighbor's kids. Its just that you can never again expect to get away with it. You WILL be caught.

    An entire genre of crime fiction will become "passé." The rationale for the cerebration and observation of Sherlock Holmes will disappear when we can all go to the instant replay.

    And surveillance cuts both ways.

    Your rights will never again be blithely ignored by some bully with a badge who tries to re-arange your facial features with a door frame. (But then again YOU'll never again be able to blame somebody ELSE for your own stupidity.)

    Get over it. There a 1.2 trillion dollar hole in the economy, a hole in the New York skyline and in downtown New York filled with damn near three thousand people killed there. And I was almost one of 'em.

    I feel your pain.

    Now smile for the camera and shut the fuck up.
  • by JimBobJoe (2758) <swiftheart@nOspAM.gmail.com> on Saturday April 13, 2002 @09:19PM (#3337179)
    This can work in most states. Most of the time the legislatures did in fact pass laws requiring that photos be on licenses. (New York is an exception, a photo is not required on a license, but the commissioner of motor vehicles can require a photo if s/he wants. And of course Vermont doesn't require a photo at all.)

    Anyway, state legislatures however have generally not passed laws authorizing their DMV's to keep the photos in archive. (NJ and CO are however exceptions--the only ones so far I've found.)Most states have privacy laws that prohibit the collection of data which is not authorized by statute.

    I just took a gander through CT law, and I see the requirement for a photo license, but no requirement for digitally archiving the photo.

    So here is the crux:

    *a photo is required on a license by CT law
    *no statute exists that says that the photo has to be archived
    *since CT issued non digital licenses without archiving photos for many years, your argument can be that the DMV can carry out their duties without archiving all the photographs--in particular, yours
    *i bet CT does have some privacy laws that prohibit the collection of data which is not authorized by statute, nor collecting data which is necessary to carry out duties required by statute
    *with all the above, go file a mandamus action ordering the dmv commissioner to remove your photo from the database

    If all the above is the case, I would ask you put some money into it and get a lawyer--to set up good precedence.

    Here in Ohio, the same thing can be done (no money for lawyer right now though. :-( Better yet, here in Ohio, the legislature did require that photos from commercial licenses be archived...but not those from regular operator licenses. So here's it's even easier to argue that if the legislature did not authorize the collection, and the bmv survived fine without doing it, then it is not necessary to carry out their duties, and is a violation of Ohio privacy law.

    I'm not a lawyer, I don't even play one on television, but I like to think that I know something about this topic. :-)

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