Wednesday, June 20, 2007

US Border Security less than your average Parking Lot Security!

If you have ever owned a monthly-pass or similar multi-day pass for a parking-lot, you are perhaps aware of the fact that the computers which the pass interacts with are smart enough to not allow the same pass to repeatedly check in to a parking lot without first having checked out of the lot. The reason is obvious: you wouldn't want a less-than-honest person to drive his car into the lot, hand his pass to his buddy who then drives his car in and hands it to his friend, and so on - eventually giving the pass back to the first person who will start the process over the next day, and only having paid for one pass while letting many cars into the lot.

Well, it seems the United States Department of Homeland Security and Border Security / Immigration can not even figure out such a simple concept for securing our own borders. Tonight on the national News, reporters were showing how, in addition to using fake documents to enter this country, illegal immigrants are passing through our borders using real documents (passports, green-cards / permanent resident cards, etc) they "rent" to each other to cross the border.

Basically, they keep an inventory of passports and photo-ID's from legal US citizens or green card holders, and when a person wants to gain illegal entry into the United States, they simply rent them one of these documents with an identification photo that is "close enough" that the border patrol / immigrations people don't question the validity of it (i.e., they don't question whether the person in the picture is really the same person that is now holding the document). So, the illegal immigrant now crosses the border using someone else's valid US documentation that they have "rented" (for a few hundred dollars or more), and then they hand that documentation back off to a carrier who returns it to the inventory back in Mexico... all to begin the process again with another person.

So, if the United States had even half a care for border enforcement, they would implement a SUPER SIMPLE computerized database that tracks which of these pieces of identification are being used for repeated entry into the United States without an associated exit. This of course would imply the US Border would have to scan or enter the document number / identification in both directions (incoming and outgoing), but that should be SUPER SIMPLE with modern bar-coding, RF-ID, and other such things!

Documents that are being used for "one-way" entry constantly (I doubt there will be any one-way USA-Exit patterns!) should be confiscated. If the person holding the documents is not the true owner (which, simply biometrics like a fingerprint should be used for), the person should be denied entry. Also, if the person using the documents is the valid holder, and the document is flagged as a repeat-entry (without similar number of exits) document, then this person perhaps needs to be flagged as a potential human-trafficking agent, and at a minimum put on a watch-list so that anytime their ID shows up for a border-crossing, a thorough confirmation of identity-match is performed. This would at least bring our border security technology up to that of your average parking lot!

It doesn't stop those who jump fences or break in by other means (any more than a parking lot pass does), but it does stop an entire wave of illegal immigration - and certainly stops car-loads of people from illegally entering this country (presuming the cars cross a check-point), just as the technology stops cars from parking at a parking lot without a pass of their own.

One way or the other, our government really needs to start securing this border. It's only a matter of time before something goes horribly wrong because of open borders. Sadly, I can nearly guarantee that nothing will ever be done - certainly nothing that will have any impact on the problem - until it is too late.

1 comment:

DED said...

Our government's incompetence never ceases to amaze me.