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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
2nd article under first.

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Just something that's good to be aware of, for the sake of keeping up with timelines, deadlines and plans for the future.


What was labeled an unhinged conspiracy theory just last year has become a reality today.
Unindicted human rights criminal Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced this week that New York has rolled out the nation’s first COVID vaccine passport program with the introduction of the “Excelsior Pass.”
According to reports, the COVID-19 vaccine passport is already ready for use at dozens of venues statewide, including at Madison Square Garden. While advertised as a “voluntary” measure, New York State officials are making it clear that not participating in the program will result in an individual being essentially shut out from society.
“New Yorkers have proven they can follow public health guidance to beat back COVID, and the innovative Excelsior Pass is another tool in our new toolbox to fight the virus while allowing more sectors of the economy to reopen safely and keeping personal information secure,” Gov. Cuomo said in introducing the vaccine passport. “The question of ‘public health or the economy’ has always been a false choice — the answer must be both. As more New Yorkers get vaccinated each day and as key public health metrics continue to regularly reach their lowest rates in months, the first-in-the-nation Excelsior Pass heralds the next step in our thoughtful, science-based reopening.”
Of course, readers of The Dossier know by now that Gov. Cuomo has a bit of a reputational problem, to put it mildly, and that the New York Metro Area has had the worst COVID-19 outcomes of any area in the United States.
Nation’s first ‘vaccine passport’ coming to New York Nation’s first ‘vaccine passport’ coming to New York pic.twitter.com/Qg0Tfes9Cx
— New York Post (@nypost) March 26, 2021
The “Excelsior Pass” mobile application will display a green checkmark if the person has been vaccinated or tested negative for COVID-19. A red “x” means they have not met this standard.
The New York State vaccine passport app was built by IBM, the multinational technology company — with a very dark history — that recently sold its computer and servers business to a Chinese company. The corporate press, for its part, has taken pains to blindly claim that your privacy will be protected, despite zero indications or verifiable information that this is actually the case.
It remains unclear how IBM is securing New York residents’ sensitive health information. They claim to be doing so through the use of blockchain technology, which doesn’t really make much sense when you understand what a blockchain actually is.
The blockchain was invented by the founder(s) of Bitcoin, the popular open source digital currency that has soared in popularity in recent years. On the Bitcoin network, the blockchain serves as a publicly accessible, verifiable transaction archive. This transaction archive is known as the ledger. It is open source and anyone with an internet connection can access it. The bottom line is that blockchain technology does not protect privacy and that was never its intended purpose.
Still, major corporations have attempted to leverage the success of Bitcoin and make the case that they are implementing some of its features into their business, at least from a marketing and public relations perspective. Blockchain, in 2021, has transformed into a corporate buzzword to mean a lot of things, or nothing at all, and IBM has not elaborated on how its “blockchain” does anything to secure sensitive information. For watchdog organizations, the use of “blockchain” to hype claimed technology innovation regularly serves as a red flag for shady business practices.
The Intercept has published a lengthy article about the several privacy concerns surrounding the IBM “digital health pass.” Their chief area of scrutiny appears to be the reality that the application had zero public audits or oversight in its publicly-funded development and rollout.
“Gov. Cuomo gave us screenshots of the user interface, but he never even published a privacy policy,” Albert Fox Cahn, the executive director of the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project, told the Intercept. “We have no idea how this data can be tracked.”
In addition to the privacy issues, others fear that the vaccine passport can result in a China-like social credit score system, and a system of “digital segregation” among citizens.
New York is just one of several states that is introducing an independent vaccine passport program (Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, to his great credit has ruled it out as a misguided, authoritarian idea). With so many states developing their own applications, this complicates privacy and security matters even more so, given the reality that this means several companies will be able to possess sensitive health information, and will have to send your medical records through multiple networks. Competition for vaccine passport contracts is heating up, and there are many technology companies seeking to profit from COVID Mania.
Pritzker said he liked the idea of a COVID-19 “vaccine passport” for ensuring attendees at events and gatherings are vaccinated. J.B. Jabbed: Illinois Governor Receives J&J Coronavirus Vaccine
— Patch Illinois (@PatchIllinois) March 25, 2021
Despite potential obstacles, state pushes forward on vaccine passport plan Despite potential obstacles, state pushes forward on vaccine passport plan #HNN
— Hawaii News Now (@HawaiiNewsNow) March 27, 2021
These states are not alone in embracing the social credit score model. Several European Union members (The EU is introducing a “Digital Green Certificate”), South American countries, China, and other nations are moving forward on their own vaccine passport systems.
Reprinted with permission from The Dossier.
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UPDATE




The Biden administration is working on a vaccine-passport program that would allow people to prove they have received a coronavirus vaccination before entering venues that have been closed during the pandemic, such as offices or movie theatres, The Washington Post and CNN reported.
Five officials, who spoke anonymously, told The Post that the White House is pushing efforts by federal agencies and private companies to develop the program.
Vaccine passports have been widely touted around the world as a way for commerce to start returning to normal while reducing the risk of COVID-19 outbreaks. They could be required for entry to sports arenas, music venues, or restaurants, or to travel internationally.
The passports will likely take the form of a scannable code displayed on smartphones, private developers told The Post, while users without smartphones will be able to print codes onto paper.

New York has already announced an app called the Excelsior Pass, which will allow users to prove they have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or have recently tested negative, Forbes reported.
One official suggested to CNN that vaccine passports could be required for people returning to work.
The White House declined to comment to The Post on record but pointed to comments from Jeffrey Zients, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, who said at a briefing in March: "As we increase the number of people vaccinated, we know some people may have a need to demonstrate that they are vaccinated.
"The private sector and not-for-profit coalitions are already beginning to work on this.

"Our role is to help ensure that any solutions in this area should be simple, free, open source, accessible to people both digitally and on paper, and designed from the start to protect people's privacy."
The idea of vaccine passports is gathering momentum worldwide too.
The United Kingdom is considering a similar plan, and the European Union has announced a "Digital Green Certificate" which aims to prove whether a carrier has been vaccinated, tested negative, or recovered from the virus.
"With this certificate, we aim to help member states reinstate freedom of movement in a safe, responsible, and trusted manner," European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said at a news conference earlier in March.
 
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"The “Excelsior Pass” mobile application will display a green checkmark if the person has been vaccinated or tested negative for COVID-19. A red “x” means they have not met this standard."

There is no law requiring a person to own, carry, or use a cellular telephone.

Additionally, New York is one of those places claiming that requiring a printed state ID is a onerous requirement for voting that denies people of their right to vote. Since this is the case, there is no way they can legally require everyone to have not just a cellular phone, but a phone that is capable of internet access, and with internet service fully paid.
 

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Agreed. I have no cell at all. Don't want one....but they could certainly say that you have to have this passport to access things, regardless of the device it's displayed on.
 

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I'm actually totally fine with a private property owner wanting to verify anything about you to allow access to their property. But government (or partly government) owned property should never work that way.

There is also absolutely no reason for the government to be involved in this. If a private property owner wants to verify something about you, they have lots of ways to do that. And if there is sufficient demand (which is very likely) private sector solutions will spring up (as they have already started to do). There is no justification for a massive, privacy infringing centralized government apparatus to perform this task.


Anyone want to take bets on how long until not being vaccinated is a 'public health hazard' that warrants confiscation of firearms?
 

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I'm actually totally fine with a private property owner wanting to verify anything about you to allow access to their property. But government (or partly government) owned property should never work that way.

There is also absolutely no reason for the government to be involved in this. If a private property owner wants to verify something about you, they have lots of ways to do that. And if there is sufficient demand (which is very likely) private sector solutions will spring up (as they have already started to do). There is no justification for a massive, privacy infringing centralized government apparatus to perform this task.


Anyone want to take bets on how long until not being vaccinated is a 'public health hazard' that warrants confiscation of firearms?
Well, that is one of the current threats by the Biden administration....to call gun violence a 'public health crisis' and then use EOs to rein in gun owners. The vaccination effort could conceivably dovetail quite nicely.
 

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Agreed. I have no cell at all. Don't want one....but they could certainly say that you have to have this passport to access things, regardless of the device it's displayed on.
I'm impressed. Up until 2018, I carried a flip phone. I now carry a smart phone and know I'm on it way too much.
 

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I'm actually looking forward to the point in my life when I can get rid of my phone altogether. I dream of one day having no phone, no clock, and no car.
 

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I'm impressed. Up until 2018, I carried a flip phone. I now carry a smart phone and know I'm on it way too much.
Well, if it's any consolation, I'm online too much, lol.
 

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It's a direct violation of the 4th Amendment. You'll need to show your papers to verify you've been vaccinated, but not show an ID when voting to verify who you are. Insanity!
 

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It's a direct violation of the 4th Amendment. You'll need to show your papers to verify you've been vaccinated, but not show an ID when voting to verify who you are. Insanity!
Unless you're in Delaware (home of our Uncle Joe). ID is required there. But that's not racist at all--because they put a little (d) after the names of the party officials who run the show.
 
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