DHS issues revised “Real ID” regulations

The Department of Homeland Security has released revised “Real ID” regulations — 284 pages long. While according to government jargon these are the “final” regulations, the first deadline for compliance has now been pushed back to December 31, 2009, so there’s still plenty of opportunity for Congress to act and change things.

Their press release now spins the system as “preventing document fraud”, and talks more about the costs of identity theft than it does about terrorism — pretty amusing in light of Privacy Rights Clearinghouse’s Real ID Act will increase exposure to identity theft. It also trumpets substantial cost savings, which it attributes primarily to revisions giving the states “greater flexibility in issuing licenses to older Americans”. Flexibility is a good thing, but it’ll be interesting to see what new holes they’ve introduced for terrorists and identity thieves to exploit.

I’ve blogged in the past on this issue on the Stop “Real ID” Now! blog, and will be updating it with links to analyses from the press and civil liberties organizations as they come out.