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“At the very least, Secretary Napolitano should follow the Data Privacy and Integrity Advisory Committee’s recent suggestion that DHS improve the Real ID final rule,” Miss Hofmann said. “Of course, the biggest problem with Real ID is the law itself, so we hope Secretary Napolitano works with Congress to do away with this fundamentally flawed program.”

The advisory committee sent a letter to Miss Napolitano on Feb. 5 with 16 recommendations on privacy issues facing the department, including the need for more privacy officers for different components of the agency and creating a culture of privacy throughout the agency. The advisory committee also asked Miss Napolitano to review privacy and data security issues pertaining to the Real ID program.

Meanwhile, Miss Napolitano also announced Thursday that Mary Ellen Callahan has been appointed as the department´s Chief Privacy Officer.

“Homeland security and privacy are not mutually exclusive, and having a seasoned professional like Mary Ellen on the team further ensures that privacy is built in to everything we do,” Miss Napolitano said.

Ms. Callahan, a law partner at Hogan and Hartson specializing in privacy, security, and data protection is also the co-chairman of Online Privacy Alliance, a group of corporations dedicated to creating online trust and privacy.