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Story highlights

New details suggest Trump could re-start a registry of people entering the country from certain countries rather than a ban on Muslims

The architect of the program has also advised Trump

(CNN) —  

At rallies in the last weeks of his presidential campaign, Donald Trump told his supporters “my plan ends illegal immigration and suspends immigration from terror problem regions” and that “we will stop illegal immigration, deport all criminal aliens… and it will happen within the first week of my presidency.”

It may not be happening that quickly, but it looks like Trump’s tough immigration policy is starting to take shape.

Trump’s team is working on plans for a program that would track immigrants traveling to the US from high-risk countries, a source familiar with the process told CNN.

The source says it will be similar to a program initiated after 9/11, called the called the NSEERS program (National Security Entry-Exit program), which folded five years ago. It did not suspend immigration from those countries, but rather required an additional layer of screening for people coming from countries inhabited by known terrorists, like Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan—all Muslim-majority nations. The screening included extensive interviews, fingerprinting, and for some, monthly checks.

The program being mentioned now was blasted by civil rights activists, and the ACLU told CNN in an interview this week that NSEERS “actually made genuine efforts at trying to combat terrorism more difficult by destroying relationships with immigrant communities and actually negatively impacting the ability of the federal government to cooperate with foreign governments in fighting terrorism.”

The program also ignores data, compiled by groups like The New America Foundation, which shows most domestic terror attacks are carried out by US-born or naturalized citizens.

A DHS inspector generals’ report in 2012 called the program “obsolete,” “unreliable” and an “inefficient use of resources.”

A Muslim ban

A registry for people from these countries is the latest iteration of a Trump proposal that began with a shocking call in December 2015 when he said he wanted “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our c