News & Resources

NIST online identity plan flawed

Sep 24, 2011 Karen Umpierre

The National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace - an identity theft prevention plan introduced by President Barack Obama in April - is coming under fire. Kenneth C. Wisnefski, CEO of search engine marketing company Webimax, recently pointed out that while the goal of the plan is to create an enhanced online identity and bolster Americans' confidence in ecommerce, there's still more that can be done. "The new plan proposed by Washington has the right idea, however, the product may increase the extent of fraud committed against others," said Wisnefski. "Essentially creating a master key to your online identity can have extensive ramifications if the single key is lost." Obama's plan aimed to create a single identity authentication system that would be primarily used for significant online transactions, such as those involving Social Security, I.R.S. services, banking or buying a home. "I caution this will open the door to more devastating methods of identity theft," Wisnefski adds. According to the NIST website, approximately 11.7 million Americans were identity theft victims over the past two years. The proposed "identity ecosystem" is designed to control which information is released.