Tuesday, September 25, 2012



Note: One more time boy and girls. What is the primary method of ID
for purchase of a firearm?
Yes, it is the driver's license. If citizens have to come up with a
birth certificate, do illegals have to also? And, who can actually
check it? The NICS system for firearm purchase criminal background
checks only sees if someone is in the system. If not, all is ok

States make fake IDs quick and easy
Feds test forged birth certificates
By Stephen Dinan-The Washington Times Sunday, September 23, 2012

Federal investigators were able to get fraudulent driver's licenses
in all three states where they tried, according to a report released
Friday that shows continued problems with states' ID programs more
than 11 years after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks highlighted the

States are particularly flummoxed by out-of-state documents,
according to investigators from the Government Accountability Office
who conducted the audit.

The investigators used forged birth certificates purportedly issued
by Ohio and New York, and successfully submitted them in three other

"In most of these five attempts across the three states, we were
issued permanent or temporary licenses in about 1 hour or less," the
audit says. "In only one case did a front-counter clerk appear to
question the validity of one of the counterfeit documents, but this
clerk did not stop the issuance process."

The GAO did not name the three states it targeted, but it said states
across the country are likely vulnerable to the out-of-state document-
fraud issue.

A full verification system that would help states perform checks on
out-of-state identities could be a decade away, the investigators
said in their report.

The auditors also faulted the Homeland Security Department, which it
said has failed to tell states how to carry out key parts of Real ID,
the 2005 law that is supposed to tighten rules on how states issue
identification cards and driver's licenses.

In its official response, the Homeland Security Department rejected
auditors' recommendations, saying states are free to collaborate and
come up with their own state-to-state systems. The department said it
is using federal taxpayer money to help some states that are trying
new methods but that it will not push them.

The Homeland Security Department "supports states having the
flexibility to adopt innovative solutions and leverage emerging
technologies to implement strategies best suited to their individual
needs," said Jim H. Crumpacker, Homeland Security's point man for
responding to the GAO.

Overall, federal agencies pointed fingers at one another.

The Social Security Administration, which controls the databases for
its all-important numbers, said it was up to Homeland Security and
the Transportation Department to deal with driver's license laws,
while Homeland Security said birth certificate fraud is a problem for
the Health and Human Services Department.

The GAO said states need national leadership to encourage
coordination and that Homeland Security officials aren't providing it.

"States need new interim solutions and alternatives now," the
auditors say.

They pointing to the chorus of state officials who said they are
still searching for solid guidance on how to conform with Real ID.

Part of the problem is that the federal government always has been
lukewarm on Real ID, which was enacted to carry out the 9/11
Commission's recommendations after the terrorist hijackers used valid
IDs to board the four planes that killed 2,977 people.

The law set federal standards for driver's licenses intended to be
used for federal purposes, such as boarding planes.

But the Bush administration and the Obama administration repeatedly
have extended deadlines for states to comply with some of the

Governors from both parties have applauded the delays, but
congressional Republicans who pushed the legislation say each
extension is a setback for security.

The current deadline is Jan. 15 — nearly five years after the initial

Most states have adopted requirements that those seeking licenses
prove they are in the country legally, but they are now grappling
with how to handle President Obama's new nondeportation policy for
younger illegal immigrants.

Under that policy, those illegal immigrants will be granted tentative
legal status and work authorization, but Homeland Security says they
are not considered to be here legally — a status that has states
confused about how to treat them for purposes of identification.

Read more: States make fake IDs quick and easy - Washington Times

Vulnerabilities Exist In Detecting Counterfeit Documents To Get
Driver's License
By: Anthony Kimery
09/24/2012 (10:28am)

The Government Accountability Office (GAO), on Sept. 21, sent a new
audit report to lawmakers that recommended the Department of Homeland
Security (DHS) work with its partners to take interim actions to help
states address cross-state and birth certificate fraud.

However, the GAO report stated "DHS did not concur with these
recommendations, saying its ongoing efforts are sufficient."

In response, GAO said it " has demonstrated that vulnerabilities
remain as long as national systems are not yet fully operational,"
and "therefore, GAO continues to believe additional DHS actions are

GAO explained to Congress that in order "to verify license
applicants' identity, all 50 states and the District of Columbia have
procedures that may detect counterfeit documents. For example, all
states are now verifying key personal information, such as Social
Security numbers (SSN) through online queries to a Social Security
Administration (SSA) database," which GAO noted is "a significant
increase from about a decade ago."

This effort helps to ensure that the identity information presented
by a person actually "belongs to a valid identity and also is not
associated with a deceased person," GAO said. "Additionally, most
states verify non-citizen applicants' immigration documents with" DHS
"to ensure these individuals have lawful status in the United States.
Many states are also using facial recognition techniques to better
detect attempts to obtain a license under another's identity. While
most states have taken steps required by the REAL ID Act of 2005
(Act), officials in some states indicated that they may not comply
with certain provisions -- such as re-verifying SSNs for license
renewals -- because of state laws or concerns that these requirements
are unnecessary and burdensome."

State officials interviewed by GAO reported to the agency's
investigators "that identity verification procedures have been
effective at combating certain kinds of fraud," but that important
vulnerabilities remain.

For example, "officials in most of the 11 states GAO contacted
reported a decline in the use of counterfeit identity documents, and
officials in states using facial recognition said they detected a
number of identity theft attempts."

Both of these problems are among scores of identify fraud issues that
DHS Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) officials have told
Homeland Security Today in recent months during background interviews
that they are very concerned about – an admission that contradicts
DHS' official position to GAO that its ongoing efforts to combat
these problems "are sufficient."

But DHS HSI officials said "that just isn't the case," as one had
said several months ago during interviews about these problems.

And according to the GAO, "criminals can still steal the identity of
someone in one state and use it to get a license in another because
states lack the capacity to consistently detect such cross-state
fraud. A system for addressing such fraud would enable states to
comply with the Act's prohibition against issuing licenses to
individuals who already have a license from another state, but may
not be fully operational until 2023."

"Furthermore," GAO informed lawmakers, "officials in many states said
they have difficulties detecting forged birth certificates. Verifying
date of birth is also required by the Act, and a system exists for
doing so, but no licensing agencies are using it because of concerns
about incomplete data, among other reasons. Partly because these two
systems are not fully operational, GAO investigators were able to use
counterfeit out-of-state drivers' licenses and birth certificates to
fraudulently obtain licenses in three states."

The federal auditing agency said that "by improving their respective
verification systems, SSA and DHS have helped states enhance their
identity verification procedures. For example, SSA has established
timeliness goals for responding to state SSN queries and DHS has
addressed data accuracy issues."

DHS has also provided funding for states to develop new systems, but
the department "has not always provided timely, comprehensive or
proactive guidance to help states implement provisions of the Act
related to identity verification," GAO concluded. For example, "DHS
did not issue formal, written guidance in this area for more than
four years after issuing final regulations, even though officials
from most states GAO interviewed said they needed such guidance," the
report states. "Additionally, even though relevant national systems
are not yet fully operational, DHS has no plans to promote certain
alternatives states can use to comply with the Act's identity
verification requirements and combat cross-state and birth
certificate fraud. Officials in some states indicated they needed
direction from DHS in this area."

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