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America IdentifiedBiometric Technology and Society$
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Lisa S. Nelson

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780262014779

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262014779.001.0001

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Modern Identification Systems

Modern Identification Systems

(p.26) (p.27) 1 Modern Identification Systems
America Identified

Lisa S. Nelson

The MIT Press

This chapter begins with the historical perspective of the systems of identification. The modern state and society are required to have systems of identification to identify their citizenry for various purposes. Systems of identification have long been used to govern bureaucratic administrations, avert threats, and deal with those people who are thought to be dangerous to internal social stability. However, there are certain concerns that make people worry over the development and deployment of a system of identification. People find they may lose their liberty, privacy, and anonymity in the event of excessive control and misuse of information. People support systems of identification when it comes to being protected from external threats of war, terrorism, antisocial elements, and threats to the internal stability of society; but they hesitate to support this when the identification system interferes in the day-to-day activity of an individual through the bureaucratic workings of the government.

Keywords:   systems of identification, modern state, bureaucratic administrations, liberty, privacy, anonymity, misuse of information

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