U.S. Visit Launch Met With Criticism; More Headlines: E-Filing Success Prompts IRS Changes; MCI Gets a Reprieve From Uncle Sam; New Headache for EDS Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge flew to Atlanta on Monday to assist kick-off the contentious U.S. Visit app -- a complex system which will display most foreign nationals when they enter the nation. According to Ridge, the program -- which will collect photographs and fingerprints from visitors and display them against a terrorist risk database -- "would be 'easy for travelers to use but difficult for terrorists to prevent,'" that the Atlanta Journal-Constitution documented. See Also: https://carspeakerland.com/the-best-car-speakers-reviews-on-the-market "The program has drawn a broad array of critics. Airports worry it's going to exacerbate lines. Civil libertarians raise privacy issues that the authorities will utilize the data for purposes outside monitoring offenders and visas. A Brazilian judge stated the system discriminates against particular foreigners and has ordered officials from his nation to start photographing and fingerprinting American people," The Washington Post reported. The government has held open the prospect of collecting further biometric indicators in the long run," she told the Journal-Constitution, "and 'that presents significant questions regarding solitude.'" Even the New York Times touched on the privacy issues in a bit yesterday: "Biometrically publicized identification for example fingerprinting is possibly the only reliable means to monitor passengers or a civic action that violates human rights since it singles out citizens of particular nations. A strategy to install armed marshals on certain planes entering the United States is approved by nations such as Israel, which has utilized the clinic, but is opposed by nations such as Portugal, Sweden, Denmark, South Africa and Thailand, which see it as potentially dangerous and disorderly." Changes in the IRS The national tax service is cutting some tasks and adding other people to its own 115,000-member work force to adapt to some growth in e-filing along with other modifications, '' The Washington Post reported today. The IRS said that it's "adding 2,200 employees to beef up its tax-enforcement arms, shooting as many as 2,400 workers whose abilities don't match the bureau's new demands and moving or retraining over 4,000 others. The change represents the agency's present emphasis on decreasing tax-cheating and its growing usage of machines to replace individuals for more regular tasks, officials stated," the newspaper stated. "The growth of electronic filing of tax returns has had a significant effect on the bureau's workload and is an integral element in permitting the bureau, as IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson place it 'crop benefits' of technologies." The National Treasury Employees Union is combating with the Advances. NTEU President Colleen Kelley advised GovExec.com the e-filing rates have leveled off, which makes the IRS restructuring attempt "premature" However, the General Accounting Office recently concluded that only 61 percent of taxpayers will file returns electronically by 2007, almost 20 percentage points under the IRS' target for online yield rates." MCI -- the business formerly called Worldcom -- may once more go after new national government work now the agency which manages contracting has raised a five-month suspension levied last summer. Its strategy for emerging from Chapter 11 protection has been accepted by a federal judge at the autumn, and the company is likely to formally sign from bankruptcy early this year under the title of MCI, its longstanding subsidiary," The Washington Post reported today. The Wall Street Journal explained the GSA's change "came only four days prior to a major MCI contract to offer telephone, video and data solutions to government agencies is due for renewal. The contract, known as FTS 2001 , is among the government's biggest telecommunications contracts and has been worth almost $400 million into MCI in 2003, based on David Drabkin , the bureau's deputy associate administrator for acquisition policy. He explained the impending one-year expansion is possible" Federal Computer Week stated "bureau officials signed an agreement with MCI for continuing monitoring. The business must immediately report to GSA any material modifications, such as changes to its executive team, its own board of supervisors or some other new allegations, for instance." So while MCI isn't off the hook completely, it could play ball using Uncle Sam. For more information: The New car audio speakers system | Automotive speakers for car to buy Figuring out that the Pentagon's international data-mining programs might have been a fantastic idea after all. The Defense Department's inspector general concluded that the whole Information Awareness projects, brainchild of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency -- "might have been invaluable against terrorism but could have needed particular actions to deal with privacy issues," National Journal's Technology Daily reported in a post on Monday. The IG's review "revealed that even though the TIA technology can prove invaluable in combating terrorism, '' DARPA might have better addressed the significance of their technology to lessen the chance of any political abuse of power." The report urged that the DOD and DARPA research privacy consequences before TIA-type tech study proceeds and implied a solitude ombudsmen or equal. Meanwhile, just since DARPA's data-mining job obtained the axe does not imply other government agencies will not appear at similar efforts. DARPA's cousin bureau, the Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency (HSARPA), "is researching approaches to mine considerable amounts of information." However, the bureau's manager insists that this endeavor will not prompt similar privacy issues, National Journal's Technology Daily stated in a post on Tuesday. "The use of data mining -- that databases would you examine, and what information do you extract out of them, and for what purpose -- was TIA got into trouble along with also the perceived violation of privacy, especially the Privacy Act. ... We are not doing some of the stuff," HSARPA Director David Bolka advised the book in a meeting. "However he said the Homeland Security Department will mine information to get information from biological detectors, such as. The purpose is to ascertain 'background' counts to the amounts of germs like anthrax in populated regions, '' he explained." Related article: best car 6x9 speakers for bass on the market reviews | Top best rated best 6x9 car speakers The Lobbying Game With the beginning of the new calendar year, Washington lobbyists are gearing up for Congress's yield. The Washington Post noted that defense contractors "will attempt to describe their programs since the response to Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld 's call for a more nimble, technology-savvy army. The session will most likely provide another evaluation of this support for high-profile and costly programs like Bethesda-based Lockheed Martin Corp. 's F/A-22 Raptor , frequently criticized for cost overruns and falling behind schedule, and Boeing's Co. 's Future Combat Systems , that might change the Army's equipment with contemporary equipment." According to the Post, defense contractors "will also ask Congress to ease restrictions on overseas sales of fighter jets and jets. As satellites, as an instance, have commercial in addition to military programs, the argument goes, they shouldn't face the exact same State Department inspection as weapons programs. Extended and cumbersome reviews frequently make it even more challenging to compete against European competitions, which aren't as limited, the business says." The Washington Post reported that the "expense of creating the Joint Strike Fighter, a radar-evading jet, could increase up to $5 billion, to $38 billion, and the job could drop over a year behind schedule, Pentagon sources said. The increase would be largely due to the higher-than-expected price of creating parts of the technology and also the accession of new capacities for its fighter jet, based on Pentagon and business sources. Prime contractor Lockheed Martin Corp. is also working to decrease the burden of a minumum of one variant of this airplane to fulfill with the government's performance demands, sources said." $5 Billion That is the worth of contracts that the Defense Department is bidding outside for reconstruction work in Iraq. "The USAID and forthcoming Pentagon awards demand broad strategies for the job to be carried out in rebuilding or rehabilitating significant systems in Iraq, including the electrical grid, sewer and water systems, as well as airports. The final decisions on the projects and websites which will get priority will probably come via L. Paul Bremer , the civilian administrator for its U.S.-led Coalition Provisional Authority , officials stated," The Washington Post reported yesterday. Contracts can be doled out as soon as March. The rest seven contracts will pay for project management solutions. Businesses will have 30 days to reply to the requests for suggestions, '' he explained. Meanwhile, the Bechtel National on Tuesday received a $1.8 billion contract for renovation work at war-torn Iraq. Federal Computer Week stated Bechtel's work load in Iraq will consist of reconstructing Iraq's telecom community.