New York (CNNMoney) – When shoppers apply for health insurance through the forthcoming state-based Obamacare exchanges, the online system will verify each applicant's information by pulling in data from more than half a dozen federal agencies ranging from the IRS to the Peace Corps. It will know who you are, how much money you make, and whether or not you're in the United States legally.
The prospect of one online system having access to so much personal information is making some watchdogs nervous. In a USA Today op-ed decrying the system as a "privacy nightmare," researchers Stephen Parente and Paul Howard penned these scary words: "This hub will achieve what has, until now, only appeared in pulp thrillers: a central database linking critical state and federal data on every U.S. citizen for real-time access."FULL STORY