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>Co.UK: Scrapping ID cards "a momentous step"

12/21/2010

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“The ID card was launched with fantastic claims about supposed benefits. In truth, it represented the worst of government. The first duty of government is to ensure its citizens are protected, but ID cards could never have done that. They would have been a distraction from the real work that needs to be done in countering terrorism, illegal immigration or benefit fraud.” 

– Damian Green, GUARDIAN Co.uk

:::MORE HERE:::

NO2ID statement on the Royal Assent to the Identity Documents Act 2010

Issued c/o NO2ID’s Phil Booth

NO2ID is, of course, glad to see with the passing of the Identity Documents Bill the death of the ID Cards scheme and the monstrous National Identity Register that it created.

However, while NO2ID welcomes evidence that all copies of the Register are being destroyed, powers retained from the original Identity Cards Act still allow the Home Secretary to potentially enact the same enforced data-sharing across government that NO2ID has campaigned against from the beginning *. To dismantle the ID Cards scheme but leave powers it rested upon in place leaves the people of Britain vulnerable to a resurrection of the scheme.

Also, with biometric identity cards for the UK now a thing of the past, it is a shame that residents and workers from outside the EEA must undergo the same experience and are being used to justify the continued existence of much of the technical infrastructure of ID cards: the Biometric Residence Permit ** remains in place, unchanged. Do the principles that led to the scrapping of ID cards for EU citizens not apply to those other legal residents?

This partial abolition is an excellent first step, but the Government should now take the courage to override the deep laid bureaucratic plans, and finish the job. NO2ID will not stop until the database state powers that would allow mass surveillance and official trafficking in personal information are erased for good.”

*[To wit, the enforced sharing of your full name and any other names by which you are or have been known; your gender; your date and place of birth; your biometrics (which could still include your fingerprints); the address of your principal place of residence in the United Kingdom; the address of every other place in the UK or elsewhere where you have a place of residence; the times at which you were resident at different places in the UK or elsewhere; your current residential status and all previous residential statuses; information about numbers allocated to you for identification purposes and about the documents to which they relate – which could mean your driving licence, National Insurance or even your NHS number. We note the latter was specifically *excluded* from the 2006 Act.]

**Variously billed by the Home Office as “ID cards for foreigners” as if it were part of the National Identity Scheme, but in fact introduced under the UK Borders Act 2007. 

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