Scientists call to cancel biometric ID system

The existence of such a database will intrude on the privacy and human dignity of this country’s citizens and may even endanger the country’s security.

By
July 7, 2015 22:38
3 minute read.
MOLECULED is a new technology that enables LCD displays to show more vivid, real-life colors than ev

MOLECULED is a new technology that enables LCD displays to show more vivid, real-life colors than ever seen on displays before.. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Seventy-four computer scientists who represent the backbone of Israeli cyber experts are calling on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, cabinet ministers and Knesset members to put an immediate halt to the biometric identification system.

Among the signatories on the letter are: Prof. Jacob Ziv, an Israel Prize laureate and former head of National Academy of Sciences; Prof. David Harel, an Israel Prize laureate and EMET Prize laureate; Prof. Noga Alon, an Israel Prize laureate and Israel Security Award winner; Prof. Eli Biham, a former dean at the Technion Computer Science Department and founder of the cyber center; and Godel Prize laureate Prof. Moni Naor. In addition, the letter was signed by encryption experts Prof. Amir Herzberg, Prof. Danny Dolev, Yuval Ishai and Prof. Yehuda Lindell.

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The letter said: “We, the undersigned, computer and information security specialists, are warning the prime minister, cabinet ministers and Knesset members of the risks involved in making the Interior Ministry’s experimental pilot biometric identification system compulsory for all residents of the State of Israel.

The existence of such a database will intrude on the privacy and human dignity of this country’s citizens and may even endanger the country’s security.

“Preventing fake IDs is an important goal, which can be achieved by using the appropriate technological means inside the ID cards.

These technologies are quicker to install, cheaper, safer and less invasive than biometric devices and central databases, which are exposed to hacking, leaking or misuse.

“We are calling on the prime minister, the interior minister and cabinet ministers to halt the use of biometric devices and to disable the central database before the Israeli public suffers irreparable damage to their privacy and security.”

Jonathan Klinger, a lawyer for the Israeli Digital Rights Movement, said: “Extending the pilot phase of the biometric identification system is tantamount to fraud. It is a crude attempt to obscure and hide the clear findings of the failed experiment, especially in light of the state comptroller’s report, which was recently published. The government must publicize the results from the pilot and deal with them no matter how difficult this situation is.

“If there is a need to make decisions based on this information, then we must do so now, instead of adding even more citizens to the biometric database. We are calling on every Knesset member to take part in this effort to halt the biometric pilot, be it in the relevant Knesset committee or in the plenum, which is scheduled to discuss the issue.”

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Leveraging its advanced organic-chemistry research capabilities, the company has set a target to improve the image color quality of display devices while providing a cost-effective and environmentally friendly solution.

The MolecuLED is a layer composed of organic molecules that allows the LCD display to generate more vivid colors, approaching OLED image-quality levels. Additionally, the MolecuLED is constructed in a way that allows it to display the high-quality images over a long operational lifetime, exceeding 20,000 hours. It has 20 percent less power consumption compared to competing solutions, and the active layer component of the display is 90% cheaper compared to other solutions.

StoreDot develops organic materials and technologies that are inspired by natural processes and which are cost effective and environmentally friendly. The company produces organic compounds derived from customized molecules, which enable the production of batteries that can be fully charged in minutes rather than hours and energy-efficient displays.

Last year, StoreDot revealed the FlashBattery, which can fully charge a smartphone battery in 30 seconds. Earlier this year, the company said in one year the same technology will allow the charging of electric vehicles in just five minutes.

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Translated by Hannah Hochner.


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