eGovernment and Ownership


John Patrick writes:

A trailer for towing motorcycles to and from always seemed like a good idea to me. Getting the trailer was the easy part. Registering it at the Department of Motor Vehicles in Connecticut was the hard part. First I rode to Danbury -- a half hour ride. Then I stood in line for ten minutes to get a form and a ticket with a number on it -- just like at the deli. My number was 462. The wait began.

This is a great eGovernment project.  The reason: its relatively hard.  Gotta love a challenge.  Renewing a registration is easy.  Establishing one is difficult because of a piece of paper called a "title."  How to establish proof of ownership on the web?  Digital signatures (if you can get people to use them--another story) are just part of the answer.  Still if we can do mortgages online, we can do titles.  

What do we need?  A system for generating and exchanging titles securely.  Ways of turning paper titles into electronic ones, ways to turn electronic titles into paper versions, standards to recognize titles from other states, ways to recover lost titles, etc. Trustworthy digital identity is the foundation of this, but only the foundation.