[Seth-Trips] Stanford Linear Accelerator Center

Seth David Schoen schoen at loyalty.org
Fri Feb 13 14:00:57 PST 2004

Riana Pfefferkorn writes:

> SLAC in Palo Alto offers free tours to the public on select dates. You
> must make a reservation in advance - and present photo ID.

I wonder what their rationale for that is and also whether SLAC actually
does anything with the ID.  Bruce Schneier pointed out that most
organizations that now ask for ID neither record visitors' identities
nor check the ID against lists of suspected malefactors.  (For
example, several Federal buildings recently asked me for ID, but when
I showed it to them, they didn't put me into a database nor look me up
in one.  That dramatically reduces the harms to privacy from the
practice, but it's also weird because it suggests that not much
security benefit can be derived.  Schneier suspects this kind of thing
is probably "security theater".)

Seth David Schoen <schoen at loyalty.org> | Very frankly, I am opposed to people
     http://www.loyalty.org/~schoen/   | being programmed by others.
     http://vitanuova.loyalty.org/     |     -- Fred Rogers (1928-2003),
                                       |        464 U.S. 417, 445 (1984)

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