Feeds

ID scheme will cost £400m annually

It's OK: Jacqui can afford it

Website security in corporate America

The government could save around £400m each year if it cancelled identity cards and stuck with the current generation of passports, according to Home Office figures.

If start up costs of £300m are included, the National Identity Scheme looks set to cost government and citizens around £4.3bn more than the cost of current passports over a decade.

This is more than triple the £1.31bn specific cost of identity cards over a decade released by the Home Office earlier this week. This is because the £400m annually also includes the cost of adding fingerprints to passports – the current ones include only digitised photos – the costs to the rest of government of the National Identity Scheme and the charges made to individuals for having their biometrics taken.

The figures were released in an impact assessment signed by home secretary Jacqui Smith and placed in the House of Commons library on 6 May 2009. This also says that the scheme will eventually generate annual benefits of £900m to £1.6bn.

These benefits would total £9bn to £17bn over 30 years, measured on a discounted basis, compared with total discounted costs of £7bn. This will produce a net benefit of £2bn to £10bn, with the midpoint, £6bn, quoted by Jacqui Smith in a speech last week.

The Home Office says the benefits will come from time savings to individuals in dealing with government and business, more efficient processes for government and business, and reduced costs from identity related fraud.

"It is crazy to fritter away billions of pounds on an unnecessary and intrusive ID card scheme during the biggest crisis in public finances for a generation," said Liberal Democrat shadow home secretary Chris Huhne.

"Only the most profligate of governments would stick with this ridiculous plan when costs are spiralling out of control. It shows just how out of touch ministers are that they think charging people through the nose to invade their privacy is acceptable."

This article was originally published at Kable.

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

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
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
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
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
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.