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E-Verify RIDEs to Arizona, Maryland, and Wyoming

Summary:
On July 31st, Arizona, Maryland, and Wyoming became the latest states to sign up to the Department of Homeland Security’s Records and Information from DMVs for E-Verify (RIDE) program. RIDE is an add-on to E-Verify that draws upon state-level motor vehicle departments’ records to supposedly improve E-Verify’s accuracy. The three states join Florida, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Wisconsin as participants in the RIDE program. Driver’s licenses and non-driver ID cards account for nearly 80 percent of proof of identity documents submitted by users of E-Verify. RIDE allows the E-Verify system to run a license issued by a participating state against state driver’s license databases, ostensibly in order to check the document’s validity. As all of the participants in

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On July 31st, Arizona, Maryland, and Wyoming became the latest states to sign up to the Department of Homeland Security’s Records and Information from DMVs for E-Verify (RIDE) program. RIDE is an add-on to E-Verify that draws upon state-level motor vehicle departments’ records to supposedly improve E-Verify’s accuracy. The three states join Florida, Idaho, Iowa, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Wisconsin as participants in the RIDE program.

Driver’s licenses and non-driver ID cards account for nearly 80 percent of proof of identity documents submitted by users of E-Verify. RIDE allows the E-Verify system to run a license issued by a participating state against state driver’s license databases, ostensibly in order to check the document’s validity. As all of the participants in the RIDE program are also participants (or actively working towards full participation) in the REAL ID federal national identification program, joining the former further integrates a state’s driver’s database with federal systems.

As with REAL ID, the RIDE program represents the creeping use of non-law enforcement “civilian” state and local databases by government agencies for purposes far beyond their original intent. With the increased use of E-Verify and DHS’s renewed push on REAL ID enforcement, expect more states to join RIDE in the future, putting more and more personal and state data in the hands of the federal government and DHS.

Alex Nowrasteh

He is an immigration policy analyst at the Cato Institute’s Center for Global Liberty and Prosperity. His popular publications have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, the Washington Post, the Houston Chronicle, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Post, and elsewhere. His academic publications have appeared in the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, the Fletcher Security Review, and Public Choice.

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