Disney's new finger scanners raise fears of 'Big Brother Mickey'
Written by Robert Niles
The Associated Press has an article today detailing Walt Disney World's new front gate fingerprint scanners, and the fears that they are raising among some privacy advocates.Tweet
Unlike at other theme parks, where all you need is a ticket to gain admittance, Disney years ago began requiring a biometric finger scan, along with a ticket, to ensure that tickets were not resold, exchanged or transferred from one visitor to another. (Which raises an economic argument about whether a ticket holder ought to have the right to resell that property... but that's another topic.)
Disney's old biometric scanners "read" information about finger size and shape. But the new ones record fingerprints, making it possible for Disney to synch its data to a wide variety of databases, including the FBI's. Disney says that it is not storing fingerprint images, but privacu advocates say that making that switch would be trivial.
One final note. This story was written by students at Northwestern University (my undergraduate alma mater) as part of the Carnegie-Knight "News21" project, for which I was an advisor this summer at the University of Southern California (where I also teach).
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