Friday, July 22, 2011

Venezuela: The Final Handover?

The Cuban regime has access to the Venezuelans’ identity data. (Photo: Cubamatinal)

It has been denounced time and again that the Hugo Chávez administration has been handing over strategic areas and areas of national security to the despotic Cuban regime.

The Barrio Adentro Mission gave it the excuse to penetrate the country’s shanty districts with health workers, who have also been engaged in indoctrinating the population, the same as the contingent of Cuban sports “instructors” have been doing country.

The interference of Cuban officials in any and all sensitive decision-making areas is common knowledge in military circles.

It is a fact that the System of Registries and Public Notaries is under Cuban control: today, no one in Venezuela moves a paper relating to any property or personal data without Cuba knowing about it.

There are even fears that the submarine communications cable between Cuba and Venezuela will violate the confidentiality of people’s telephonic and electronic communications even more than they are violated at present.

Now, as though all that Cuban control were not sufficiently intolerable, Sunday’s El Nacional revealed just how far the handing over of Venezuelans’ identity data to the dictatorial State of Cuba has apparently gone.

According to the report in El Nacional, the Cuban state-owned company Albet Ingeniería y Sistemas, the same company that was in charge of Venezuela’s electronic passports, “won” the contract for modernizing the National Identification system, which is worth an estimated $170 million.

This contract has several aspects that need to be looked at carefully:

  1. The secrecy surrounding the contract: a country’s sovereignty depends to a large extent on its national identity system, which means that everything to do with handling that system should and must be absolutely transparent and be made public.

  2. The high cost: Albet Ingeniería y Sistemas subcontracted the multinational Gemalto, headquartered in Mexico. This will make the Venezuelan electronic identity cards one of the most expensive cards with biometric identification technology acquired by countries in Latin America.

  3. But the most serious aspect of all is that the national identity data of the Venezuelan population is being handed over to a foreign power. According to El Nacional, all the software and security guidelines of the identification system will be controlled by Cuba, who will keep “the originals of the source codes (the codes that describe the functioning of the software and allow changes to be made) of the developed computer applications for as long as the technical support period lasts.” To make matters worse, “the Venezuelan party may not have access to the source codes to make changes or adjustments to the developed computer applications for as long as the contract is in force or the technical support period lasts, except when the Cuban party expressly states its agreement to this action.”
Now that Chávez is even governing from Cuba, what else is needed in order to finally hand over Venezuela to Castro?

Source: Latin American HT

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