Feeds

Gov.uk fails to communicate with e-citizens

Sites need 'immediate attention'

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

The Government's big idea to deliver its services digitally has once again taken a thumping after a report found that many of the Government's Web sites are muddled and confusing.

The problem is so bad that six in ten of the Government's 31 "flagship" sites are in need of "immediate attention in one area or another".

And despite the Government's keenness to improve dialogue with voters, it appears that some departments are reluctant for citizens to get in touch, while others can't be bothered to string together a half-decent reply to a simple enquiry.

A report assessing the usability of Government sites from Web development agency Interactive Bureau (IAB), London, discovered, for example, that the Deputy Prime Minister's department failed to provide a general email enquiry point on its site.

While departments such as The Inland Revenue, Customs & Excise, and Immigration & Nationality Directorate, refused to answer a simple enquiry because they demanded "personal details and/or case numbers to be provided in order to generate a response".

Said report author Adrian Porter: "This seems to represent a backward step. While we appreciate the resource implications the advent of email must have had on the Government, surely this is a significant area where the Government can connect with the people, and the people can feel that the Government is listening to them."

Highlighting the (lack of) communication problem that afflicts Government departments, Porter said: "We sent an email to the Foreign Office from its Web site, asking for information, and they replied with an email containing nothing more than a link to their Web site Home Page. We found this amusing, but it was hardly courteous."

Last year, research from IAB concluded that the UK Government's Web sites are a shambles and in urgent need of an overhaul. It found that the Prime Minister's own site was so bad it was described as a "mess".

IAB has recently published a list of the best - and worst - of the UK's top corporate Web sites concluding that, despite some improvements, too many sites "still do not get it" with companies showing "little ambition to get it right".

The Second Annual Report Into Key Government Web Sites is available from
iablondon.com. ®

Related Stories

UK corporate Web sites show 'little ambition'
UK Govt slammed for duff Web sites

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
Sorry London, Europe's top tech city is Munich
New 'Atlas of ICT Activity' finds innovation isn't happening at Silicon Roundabout
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.