Two news items out of China this weekend suggest diminishing privacy rights both online and offline.
Robin Hicks reports:
Internet users in China will soon be required to reveal their identities before they surf the web. This, Chinese government officials have told FutureGov, will enable China’s netizens to “speak freely” in a secure environment.
The Real Name Registration (RNR) project, known asWang Luo Shi Ming Zhi in Chinese, will require China’s 400 million internet users to enter their national ID card number, or other official ID number, before they can use popular news and commercial web sites.
Read more on Asia Pacific FutureGov.
Elsewhere, Maverick reports:
Hospitality majors at Chengdu University of Information Technology now have to swipe their fingerprints to sign in for study hall, West China Cosmopolitan Daily reports.
School authorities say taking attendance with a fingerprint reader will help to discipline students better and help them form a good habit while avoiding cheating.
Legal experts say the move doesn’t violate any law or infringe upon students’ privacy as long as the prints aren’t misused.
Swiping fingerprints is not confined to Chinese students, of course, as I’ve blogged about the use of biometrics with American students. Reading assurances about how the data will be protected and not misused always reminds me of the Monty Python skit, “Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!“