Ellison: National ID card offer

Jim Whitehead ejw@cse.ucsc.edu
Wed, 17 Oct 2001 13:32:08 -0700


Under Ellison's plan, the government would create a national identification
card. The card would contain basic information about the holder, including
Social Security number, and would be linked to a federal database containing
detailed personal data, including digital records of the person's
thumbprint, palm print, face or eyes.

Passengers would show the card at airports, Ellison said, and would have
their thumbs scanned by a digital reader to verify identity before boarding
a plane.

The cards also would be instantly checked against a new national database.
That database would base would link existing criminal and immigration data
to screen out potential terrorists.


``I don't think the government has any trouble paying for the labor
associated with the software,'' he said. ``I made this offer not because the
government can't afford to pay for the software, but because I shut up the
critics who were saying, `Gee, Larry Ellison wants to build a national
database because he wants to sell more databases,' which is pretty cynical
and bizarre. What's in it for me is the same thing that's in it for you: a
safer America.''

- Jim