Feeds

ID scheme plans 50,000 cards by April

Creaking to a start in time for Christmas

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The National Identity Scheme will produce just 50,000 cards in its first few months – and has yet to define the role or budget of its commissioner.

In response to a parliamentary written question from Liberal Democrat shadow home secretary Chris Huhne, home secretary Jacqui Smith said that about 50,000 identity cards will be issued between the scheme's launch for foreign nationals between November and April 2009. "Volumes will rise rapidly thereafter and will depend on the speed of implementation and the nature of the immigration categories brought into the scheme," she added.

On 1 September, the UK Border Agency said it will start issuing cards to foreign nationals from outside the European Economic Area on 25 November, to those applying to stay in the country as students or through marriage.

The Home Office also revealed that the role and budget of the National Identity Scheme's commissioner – a post which is required by the Identity Cards Act 2006 – has not been decided.

In response to a parliamentary question asked by Lynne Jones on the budget for the commissioner, who is meant to oversee the scheme, identity minister Meg Hillier said: "The precise definition of the role of his or her office is still being finalised and, as a result, the budget has yet to be finalised."

An Identity and Passport Service spokesperson said that the commissioner will be primarily concerned with the National Identity Register for UK nationals, which will start next year with the introduction of identity cards for workers in sensitive posts including airside staff at airports.

The department also released information on the related e-Borders border control project. In response to questions from Damian Green, Nigel Evans and Philip Davies, Liam Byrne said that it had cost £133.5m by 31 January 2008, and that the biometric visa programme had been completed in December, "three months early and several millions pounds under budget".

He added that 2.5m fingerprint enrolments have generated more than 19,000 matches of data "recorded in connection with a previous immigration or asylum matter", with an average of 1,200 such matches each month. So far, this process has brought to notice more than 3,100 applications lodged using a different identity.

On the scheme's future, Byrne said that e-Borders will check and screen 60% of all passenger and crew movements in and out of the country by December 2009, 95 per cent by December 2010 and 100% by 2014. "We do not intend to publish details of those routes for which Passenger Name Record data will be captured as this is operationally sensitive," he added.

This article was originally published at Kablenet.

Kablenet's GC weekly is a free email newsletter covering the latest news and analysis of public sector technology. To register click here.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
Adam Afriyie MP: Smart meters are NOT so smart
Mega-costly gas 'n' 'leccy totting-up tech not worth it - Tory MP
'Blow it up': Plods pop round for chat with Commonwealth Games tweeter
You'd better not be talking about the council's housing plans
Arrr: Freetard-bothering Digital Economy Act tied up, thrown in the hold
Ministry of Fun confirms: Yes, we're busy doing nothing
ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION
Environmental activist walks free after hoax sent share price over a cliff
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
Apple smacked with privacy sueball over Location Services
Class action launched on behalf of 100 million iPhone owners
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.