Feeds

Industry and academia line up to bash ID cards

MPs hear 2009 roll-out unlikely

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

The Commons Science and Technology Select Committee has heard a 2009 roll-out for ID cards is unlikely.

The comments came from London School of Economics (LSE) panelist Dr Edgar Whitley, one of the group behind the highly contentious report that put the upper limit on the scheme's cost at £19bn. Whitley's doubts on the 2009 target were echoed by National Physical Laboratory biometrics chief Dr Tony Mansfield and UCL professor Angela Sasse.

Whitley added he could still see no possibility that the Home Office's figure of £584m annually is feasible.

The four-strong panel of industry reps, who were quizzed by the Committee prior to the academics, was that much work still needs to be done on the specifications for the IT backbone of the scheme. The lack of consideration of online uses was a big oversight so far, they said.

Technology consultant and sometime Guardian contributor Dave Birch forwarded the view: "It may be that this system will fail completely and have to be reintroduced in 10 years." Oddly, he later said he thought this risk was "tolerable".

Industry reps and academics agreed that comparisons with existing ID schemes in other countries were of limited value. Microsoft's Jerry Fishenden said tangible reductions in identity fraud have not been measured. The societal impacts of government interventions vary hugely, said Sasse later.

The professor pointed out that, by their nature, studies of existing schemes have no controls; failures of the system cannot be properly assessed because they go undetected.

She added the Home Office's rubbishing of the LSE report was "astonishing".

The cross-party evidence session forms part of an inquiry into scientific advice to government. The consensus seemed to be the debate on ID cards has been "open but ill-informed". ®

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Hey, Scots. Microsoft's Bing thinks you'll vote NO to independence
World's top Google-finding website calls it for the UK
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
OECD lashes out at tax avoiding globocorps' location-flipping antics
You hear that, Amazon, Google, Microsoft et al?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.