Will Oracle’s CEO Help Trump Build a Muslim Registry?

While Twitter, Facebook, and Microsoft have refused Donald Trump’s call to build a Muslim registry, data brokers such as Oracle may already be lining up to help. Oracle CEO Safra Catz is part of the Trump transition team, and Oracle owns two major data management companies, BlueKai and DataLogix. Data brokers currently operate with little regulation, and gather data for commercial use, instead of for political or security purposes.

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How Data Brokers Track Muslims

Data brokers use information provided by consumers to segment their databases. Whenever you visit a website or place an online order, companies request details about who you are. While the brokerages use the data to understand customers and personalize the user experience, the right search can yield information about religion and country of origin. In a recent review of the mailing list company NextMark, almost 60 lists were available for sale with the keyword “Muslim”.

Will Data Brokers Help Create a Registry?

While the U.S. government might not be able to get far with retail mailing lists, these could form the basis of a more thorough dragnet. Currently, three major data brokerages, CoreLogic, Acxion, and Recorded Future have stated publicly that they would not participate in the creation of a Muslim registry. Many tech companies are also agreeing to protect user privacy from government inspection. However, according to Pam Dixon, head of the World Privacy Forum, “unless we have the data brokers, who have the actual data, agree to the same kind of restraint, we’re going to have a problem.”

Why Is a Muslim Registry So Popular?

As refugees continue to flood Europe and the United States, arguments in favor of tracking potential Muslim extremists have grown. There have been increasing terrorist attacks by Muslim fanatics in several countries, including France, Germany, and Turkey. In many cases, the suspects associated with members of Islamic State, and it is possible that a tracking system could have stopped them from gaining entry into Europe.

Does Donald Trump Support a Muslim Registry?

Donald Trump has backed away from his campaign promise to ban Muslim immigration. Still, questions remain regarding whether he plans to build a registry of Muslim individuals. Neither Trump nor his presumptive chief of staff, Reince Priebus, have rejected the idea, although it was not specifically mentioned in the lead up to the election. When questioned by an MSNBC reporter about a database tracking Muslims in the country, Trump replied, “It would just be good management.”

The History of Muslim Registries in America

Trump is not the first President to suggest implementation of a national database based on origin. President Bush established the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS) after the attacks of September of 2001. While the focus was on countries of origin, 24 out of the 25 countries named had a Muslim majority population.

Through the NSEERS process, men aged 16 and older coming from the specified countries faced interrogation. They needed to be photographed, fingerprinted, and questioned upon arrival in the United States. The program was active for 10 years. During that time, 100,000 people registered, and the government deported 14,000 of them. According to James Ziglar, a former commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, the deportations were related to overstaying visas. He confirmed that “To my knowledge, not one actual terrorist was identified.”

Singling out people of a Muslim background for additional inspection breeds ill will in exactly where we need cooperation most. The Obama administration ended the NSEERS program once it became clear that it hurt the War on Terror. Allies in the affected Muslim countries became marginalized, and intelligence gathering from the Middle East grew harder.

How Will a Muslim Registry Affect Trading

Soon we should learn if  Donald Trump proposes an official Muslim registry. This could destabilize the growing alliance between the United States and the Middle East. In periods of political uncertainty, expect gold prices to go up. Increased tensions could make it more difficult for America import oil from OPEC. However, this would encourage exploration and development by U.S. oil developers. Look for stocks in U.S. oil companies to gain value. Oracle works closely with the Trump administration. This makes its stock a good pick for a call order.