ID cards delayed until 2012
Just in time for the Olympics
The British government is delaying the roll out of the national ID card scheme to UK citizens, according to leaked documents obtained by the Tory party.
According to the documents, "Borders phase II" (UK citizens) will now roll out in 2012 instead of 2010.
The document on the "roll out strategy for the National Identity Scheme" says the first ID cards will go to "individuals where there is the strongest national or personal benefit".
The scheme "will build on and incorporate the work of the Borders Agency, which is introducing higher levels of identity management for foreign nationals".
The third priority outlined in the document is "to issue cards to those who are employed in positions of trust where identity assurance is critical to determining their appropriateness for that employment".
The Identity and Passport Service sent us the following statement:
We do not comment on leaked documents.
We have always said that the Scheme will be rolled out incrementally. As stated in the Strategic Plan for the National Identity Scheme published in December 2006, we will begin issuing ID cards for foreign nationals this year, and the first ID cards for British citizens in 2009.
By linking fingerprints to a secure database with strict rules outlining its use, the National Identity Scheme will allow individuals, business, and the state to prove identity more securely, conveniently and efficiently while protecting personal information from abuse.
The Identity and Passport Service successfully introduced the first biometric passport on time and on budget in 2006, with over 8 million now issued. The next move is to include fingerprints in a second generation biometric passport, in line with international developments in passport security. The date for that switchover to happen is currently under consideration as the UK is not bound by the EU passport Schengen regulations to do this in 2009.
The Framework procurement for the Scheme is currently underway: we will make further announcements about the rollout of ID cards in due course.
The reasons for the delay to the project, apart from usual government IT slippage, are unclear.
But the Tories also revealed that no date has been set for the publication of the report from the Public-Private Forum on Identity Management, chaired by Sir James Crosby.
A prelimary report was due by Easter 2007 but still has not been published and the Home Office confirmed no date has been set. The report was discussed with Brown in March 2007 and a fuller report will go out later this year. ®
Re: This could be an election winner for someone by then
Cliff, you'll find that when the Tories finally have something that looks like a manifesto, it won't be the things that they say, but the ways that they do them, and every last promise will be farmed out to the wonderful free market, the very same one that has sustained government for the last 30 years and has delivered very little that has directly benefited we shareholders of UK plc (oh dear... that didn't last very long as an idea did it, primarily because shareholders have some kind of power over their companies). They can talk as much as they want while they are in opposition, but as long as everything is run for profit and always with the eye on the bottom line nothing and no-one will improve the quality of our lives, and whoever is standing outside Number 10 on a Friday morning in 2009 or 2010 will be quickly pulled down into the quagmire that was born of Thatcher's mantra of Value For Money and that has turned this country into a banana republic without any bananas. *breathes*
One question: When we eventually "apply" for our ID cards, how will they know that the identity information we provide is correct?
There are three possibilities:
1) They can't really check the identity info, in which case, surely we can all apply as "Gordon Brown" and see what happens...
2) They can check the info based on existing records, which raises the question of why we 'need' ID cards in the first place.
3) They don't care whether the information is correct, but whatever you send will become your new identity - there for tracking you from now on. This clearly signifies a shifting of the balance between subject and state. It also allows people to reinvent themselves (say, illegal immigrant to 3rd generation British subject).
Since (1) is completely pie-shop, and (3) raises far too many nasty questions, I am sure the Government would suggest (2) as the correct answer. The reasoning would be something like "currently it *can* be done, but it's complex and painful - this will make it much easier". To me, that isn't reason enough!
RE; Eat this!
Up the revolution brother!
We will not go quietly into the night. We will go kicking and screaming and spitting and flicking cigarette butt ends into the eyes of our Orwellian oppressors and generally swearing a lot as well.
Who wants to bet that as we get closer to 2012, security at the Olympics will be held up as a reason for the need of the so called protection that ID Cards offer?
V is for Vendetta.