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UK ID Card Pledge

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  • User profile image
    Mike Dimmick

    I meant to post this sooner. I know a number of my fellow Brits here were not at all keen on the idea of national identity cards, and even less keen on the use of biometrics and the back-end database of all people who paid for cards. I believe it's an expensive unworkable plan with an alarming amount of personal data held on a shared database, with access permitted to many organisations I would not like to see accessing my data.

    There's a pledge running right now, organized by the NO2ID campaign. The following is the pledge text:

    "I will refuse to register for an ID card and will donate £10 to a legal defence fund but only if 10,000 other people will also make this same pledge."

    If you're a UK citizen or resident, I'd like you to consider signing up at http://www.pledgebank.com/refuse. Over 4,000 people have already signed up. I'm one of them.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Doing that now Smiley

  • User profile image
    Manip

    How do we know someone wont just pocket the cash and run?

  • User profile image
    billh

    At least the site doesn't ask you for your personal information.  Or does it?  And what are they going to do with that information? Compile a list of enemies of the state?  

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    billh wrote:
    At least the site doesn't ask you for your personal information.  Or does it?  And what are they going to do with that information? Compile a list of enemies of the state?  


    Just your real name and email address.

  • User profile image
    Tensor

    W3bbo wrote:
    Doing that now


    I thought you were not againt ID cards on the usual nothing to hide grounds?

    Signing up. So... many... objections... Thanks for bringing this to my attention, Mike.

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Tensor wrote:
    I thought you were not againt ID cards on the usual nothing to hide grounds?


    I was playing devil's advocate.

    Besides, my main issue is that I don't trust the government to keep the database secure and private, nor do I fancy corporations getting their hands on the information within either.

  • User profile image
    Dr Herbie

    I can't remember which comedian it was, but someone pointed out -- "Why do they need fingerprint and iris scan data on an ID card? I don't know about you but I tend to carry my fingers and eyes around with me ..."


  • User profile image
    Sabot

    Debating is great on C9! Anyway here is my point of view.

    I'm not actually against the idea of an ID card!

    Plenty of other countries have them and have successfully shown their advantages far out weigh their disadvantages.

    Having an integrated form of identification will mean you get to carry around less; also the Government will only need one function to administrate one form of identification, so less repetition and less duplication of effort, which saves money and makes things more efficient. The reduction of time depends on how complicated they make it!

    IMHO holding Biometric data is also a good thing, not only to combat the obvious security issues but as a stepping stone to not actually needing any card at all, which, I believe, is where we are all heading.

    I don’t have an issue either with Government sharing data about you to others as long as they follow their own law on data protection. The Government gateway project is going to make it easier for us all to talk to the Government.

    Now to my issues,

    1) I don’t like how much it’s going to cost, what I would like to know is why? If the card programme is secretly funding the SAS then fair-enough, but I would like to see a summary of the accounts please!

    2) All I’m hearing is rhetoric, mistruths, spin and agenda’s … where are the facts? Our newspapers just give us nothing to base an opinion! So, where the ID card blog? Catch up UK Government!

    So in conclusion … I’m not signing any anti-ID pledge just yet.

    P.S. I didn't vote Labour at the last election.

  • User profile image
    Manip

    Governments are the worst at handling data projects and such... Plus something like 50% of all I.T. projects fail in general and further more there are lots of contractors that charge the government more just because they can.

    Most of the problems are down to the quality (hahaha!) of the public workers in government orgs, all the decent people go work for places like Microsoft and other businesses that push forward and achieve stuff, the government gets the left overs (with a few exceptions).

  • User profile image
    Sabot

    The UK Government gateway is being built by many partners that including Microsoft and some of their Gold Partners such as Solidsoft.

  • User profile image
    Tyler Brown

    Manip wrote:
    Governments are the worst at handling data projects and such
    Tell me about it. Up here in Canada a gun registry program was started up, originally estimated at $2 000 000 CAD. I thought that seemed like a fair bit of money, considering that most of that cost was likely in software design and testing for the system. The amount spent on this project has now sky-rocketed to over two billion dollars CAD. Ridiculous...

    What surprises me is that nothing is really being done about it by the public. Few have complained, much less has actually been done. We Canadians seem to be a passive group.

  • User profile image
    irascian

    W3bbo wrote:


    Besides, my main issue is that I don't trust the government to keep the database secure and private, nor do I fancy corporations getting their hands on the information within either.


    I was pro ID cards until I got to work on a project for the NHS (the big NPfIT project that's going to centralise all patient records). All the so-called safeguards for patient confidentiality were just ignored when the project fell behind and I complained that the clearance data I needed to supply (bank statements going back years etc) was too intrusive. Of the five developers working on testing data migration not one of us had gone through the privacy protection process or been vetted.

    The government can't organise a piss up in a brewery and their IT record sucks big time. The idea that our data will be kept confidential just doesn't wash. The estimated cost for these ID cards that we will all have to pay for is going up on an almost weekly basis (talk about adding insult to injury - yet another stealth tax) We started off at about £80 but there was a report earlier this week claiming it was likely to creep up to £300. Ridiculous!

    I signed up for the petition last week. 

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Sabot wrote:
    The UK Government gateway is being built by many partners that including Microsoft and some of their Gold Partners such as Solidsoft.


    Forgive my cynicism, but I'll trust the project more once I see some FOSS groups involved.

    After all, why can't public solutions be shared or open source? It makes sense to allow the public, the system is supposidly trying to "protect", to see what's really going on under the hood.

    £50 says the database doesn't hash passwords Wink

  • User profile image
    lars

    I read the FAQ on that site and it looks pretty much (save the biometrics) like what we've had in Sweden for as long as I can remember. Noone ever questions it. The biometrics are being added to our new passports and will contain fingerprints and facial data (because the Americans require it).

    A "National Identity Registration Number" is assigned to everyone at birth, and takes the form YYMMDD-XXXX. That is your birthday and a four digit number showing among other things where in the country you are born and what sex you are. That number is the primary key for any contact with the authorites and anywhere where you need to identify yourself. Basicly you can't even rent a movie without it.

    Is it a good thing? Yes and no. You are never mixed up with someone else. You don't have to put your address or phone number on your ID card. Larger companies can just look it up in the nationwide Persons and Address database (SPAR). On the down side, it's really easy for the authorites to do a gigantic join of all their databases if and when that is needed. There is no way to opt out of the system.

    Atleast there is no law like the one proposed in France - that requires you to carry your ID around all the time.

  • User profile image
    Stitch 2.0

    W3bbo wrote:
    After all, why can't public solutions be shared or open source? It makes sense to allow the public, the system is supposidly trying to "protect", to see what's really going on under the hood.


    It is much easier to find holes in open source products than in closed source products. Imagine how many bad guys would download the source and scan it for holes, if all UK residents information is stored using that system....

  • User profile image
    W3bbo

    Stitch 2.0 wrote:
    It is much easier to find holes in open source products than in closed source products. Imagine how many bad guys would download the source and scan it for holes, if all UK residents information is stored using that system....


    ...and having a closed-source system where holes go unreported is any better?

  • User profile image
    Tensor

    Lars

    Some of the problems of this scheme are:

    Its from the ground up and will cost billions of £ to implement.

    To get a card, you will have to pay for it.

    Its meant to stop benefrit fraud, but will cost mroe to implement and run than the goverment loses in benefrit fraud.

    Its meant to stop terrorism, but no-one puts "terrorist" as there occupation, and ID didnt stop the Madrid bombings.

    Biometric technology is nowhere near good enough to identify people, and can be fooled.


    Thats ignoring the list of agencies which will have access to your data, which is quite a large list.

    At first it would be voluntary, but would be compulsary in the end. As it stands you wont be required to carry it at all times but you may be told that you must rpesent yopurself within the next few days at a police station with your ID.

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