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Michael Martinez

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Texas officials endorse enhanced driver's licenses

January 24, 2008 The top cop in Texas has endorsed a plan for the state to develop enhanced driver's licenses that can double as border-crossing credentials. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott on Tuesday ruled that the cards proposed as part of the state's high-tech licensing plan would satisfy federal law. Abbott was asked...

Official: Critics of driver's license standards are off base

January 16, 2008 A top official at the Homeland Security Department said that much of the resistance to his agency's plan for nationwide driver's licensing standards is off base. Last week, the department issued final regulations for states to implement the so-called REAL ID Act. At a Heritage Foundation event Wednesday, Homeland Security...

Experts urge assault against terrorists' Web efforts

November 6, 2007 Internet experts Tuesday told a House panel that the United States needs to immediately improve its efforts to understand and respond to the online activities of terrorists who want to harm the country. Witnesses before the House Homeland Security Intelligence, Information Sharing and Terrorism Risk Assessment Subcommittee questioned the robustness...

Identity security technologies called key to protecting homeland

October 18, 2007 A senior Homeland Security Department official on Thursday told House lawmakers that various identity security technologies have helped her agency keep dangerous people and materials out of the United States and away from critical infrastructure. But she said the department must be given flexibility in analyzing what technologies best meet...

VA is slow to upgrade tech security, GAO says

September 19, 2007 The Veterans Affairs Department has not yet fully implemented information security upgrades that auditors recommended after a massive data breach last year, according to a report released Wednesday. The Government Accountability Office said the department is moving slowly to address the data security weaknesses exposed by an incident that compromised...

Interior spending bill generous to tech programs

August 15, 2007 The Senate's pending bill to fund Interior Department programs in fiscal 2008 would direct considerable amounts of cash to technology-related programs. The $27 billion proposal approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee contains provisions for technology initiatives at various government agencies. The Environmental Protection Agency would be the biggest benefactor; it...

Homeland Security chief vows to move forward with ID law

August 8, 2007 BOSTON -- Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff told a group of state lawmakers gathered here on Wednesday that he would not retreat from a plan to impose nationwide standards for driver's licenses. Chertoff acknowledged at the annual meeting of the National Conference of State Legislatures that it will be a...

Coalition stands firm in support of national ID law

July 31, 2007 A coalition that supports a 2005 law mandating nationwide standards for driver's licenses claims that it is not fazed by the wave of federal and state lawmakers who have turned against the statute during the past year. More than a dozen states already have decided that they will not comply...

Commerce Department touts public safety grant program

June 4, 2007 Commerce Department officials on Monday outlined how a federal grant program for public safety communications will be implemented. The department's National Technology Information Administration, in consultation with the Homeland Security Department, has been tasked with allocating nearly $1 billion in grants to improve the ability of state and local public...

Immigration offices flooded with visa petitions for tech workers

April 3, 2007 Federal immigration offices have been flooded during the past two days with applications from technology companies for special visas for highly skilled foreign workers. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services began accepting applications on Monday for the 65,000 H-1B visas available for fiscal 2008, and the window for applications is almost...

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