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Saturday, 3 March 2007

Big Improvement ... Or Big Brother?

The government calls it "Real ID", but critics say it would be a real big step towards "big brother."

The Department of Homeland Security wants to make it a lot tougher for terrorists -- and you -- to get a driver's license, arguing that a driver's license is much more than just a license to drive. It's also used to prove your identity when you're checking in at an airport, renting a car, opening a bank account, or passing a government checkpoint.

New proposed guidelines, issued today, would require every state to include a digital photo, signature, and a bar code on every license. And before getting that license, an applicant would have to show a birth certificate or passport so his/her name could be verified and checked against a government database to ensure the applicant was in the country legally.