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EZPass The Border

from the just-zip-on-through dept

While RFID-based toll collection tags (EZPass, FastPass, SunPass, I-PASS, why-haven’t-these-been-standardized-PASS?, etc.) are becoming common in the US, it looks like some government officials are wondering if the same technology can be useful for border crossings. The idea actually sounds similar to the “trusted traveler” or whatever it was called program that would let certain people who proved themselves as “safe” cut security lines at airports. Drivers would still need to stop, but the RFID system would record who they are and when they’re crossing, as well as let the border agents know not to spend too much time checking them out. It’s not hard to see how this sort of system could be easily abused. “Get across the border free” cards stolen (or bought) from “safer” travelers will suddenly become a valuable currency among those who wish to get across the border illegally.

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Comments on “EZPass The Border”

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Mongo says:

Trusted Traveler

Trusted Traveler systems generally use at least one additional form of identification, such as license-plate readers that are able to scan a plate even while the vehicle is moving, and then compare the plate-number to the RFID. (This is described in numerous Web references — you can find them with a quick Google.) So at a minimum you’d need to steal the person’s SmartPass -and- their license plate. You’d probably need to use a similar model and color of vehicle as well. Typically a mismatch in any of these alerts the guard at the crossing station; the guard is proactively needed for allowing trusted vehicles through the gate, so any mismatch would clue the guard to bring down the gate pike.

Carter Rabasa (user link) says:

trusted travelers

While I think there may be potential for abuse, I wouldn’t overstate that threat. Just about any system of benefits (welfare) or taxes (IRS) that the government runs can be “gamed”. But that doesn’t make them bad ideas, it just means that periodic auditing and verification would be necessary. I think this is a great idea and, assuming the appropriate penalties were in place for violators, could be a good solution to relieve the strain on our nation’s borders and further open them up for freer movement and trade.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: trusted travelers

I too am in agreement with this form of ” authenticating ” valid travelers.
Can we expand on this a wee bit though ?
How about we also ” chip ” each and every wetback down in Tacoland so we can appropriately ” zap ” them when they don’t get back up over the border in time to mow our lawns or wipe the shit off our toilets ?
I mean, if we are going to spend zillions of dollars on a Mexican EZPAZZ system, I want some real benefits out of my tax dollars ! I want it EZ for my Rosario to get my kids off to school, wash my laundry & still get her ass back over the border in time to do it for her family as well.
Just think … If Juan calls me a ” Puta ” for making him wax my Mercedes outside in 102degree heat, I can just pull out my little key-fob & zap his ass back to complacency …

How about we just ” grease ” the hands of a few border patrol agents for an EZGASS Mexican ” Get out of America Free ” card ?

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