Border guards get first dozen ID card readers
That's 167 cards per machine - how will they cope?
The Home Office has introduced a dozen identity card readers as part of a pilot scheme, having had none earlier this year.
In a written parliamentary answer, Home Office minister Phil Woolas said that as of 1 October, the Home Office had issued 12 card readers to its staff for use at major ports and enforcement operations.
"These readers have been issued as part of a pilot to allow more sophisticated card reading checks," said Woolas.
UK ID cards can also be read at border controls at all "significant" entry points, in the same way as machine readable passports, he said.
In February a Freedom of Information enquiry from Silicon.com led to the Identity and Passport Service revealing that no police stations, border entry points or job centres were equipped to read identity cards.
In a separate written answer, Home Office minister Meg Hillier said that about 2,000 people from the Greater Manchester area have applied for an identity card.
The minister was responding to a question from Manchester Withington MP John Leech about the overall number of applications for cards and the proportion from Manchester, where the scheme is being introduced initially.
Hillier said that by 2 November 2009 "almost 12,000" people had registered their interest in the scheme and that 17 per cent of those were from Greater Manchester.
In October, the government said that civil servants working at the Home Office, the Identity and Passport Service and others working on the identity card scheme would be able to apply for cards from 20 October.
Hillier said that by 2019 the Home Office expects to have issued 88m ID cards or replacements for lost cards. However, the Conservative Party has pledged to abolish the scheme if elected to government, with a general election due by June 2010.
This article was originally published at Kable.
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And let's not forget what happens if you don't update it
What's the fine noq. About £1000.
I really want one....
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I understood the 2000 people that 'applied' for ID cards didn't actually apply. I thought they filled in a form/ticked a box to express an interest in the cards, with a subsequent application to be submitted at some point after that.
2000 people for a city the size of Manchester isn't that large.
I overheard someone the other week talking about requesting an ID card and they seemed positively excited by it. But then I do live in Bracknell, where people here are not particularly known for their intelligence.
I can't fathom why someone would want or become excited about something which *they* have to pay for which doesn't benefit them in anyway.
I personally wouldn't even get excited by someone giving me a card which doesn't benefit me in anyway.
Reminds me of when I was 16 and received my nice fancy red, white, blue National Insurance number card, then as the years go buy, you realise, that a:) It isn't necessary - no-one asks you for it, and the number could have been given to you on a piece of paper, and
b)The true nature of the NI number is so you can pay taxes!
Ah, the naivety of being 16.
Meg Hillier didn't actually say that 2000 Mancunians have applied for a card. John Leech asked how many Mancunians have applied, but being a politician she didn't answer the question: instead she answered the question she would have preferred he ask.
To be precise, he asked "...how many and what proportion of people in Manchester have applied to participate in the scheme" and she replied "... Up to and including 2 November, almost 12,000 people have registered their interest in the National Identity Service. So far 17 per cent. of those registered are from the Greater Manchester area."
(The ellipses because he asked three questions, of which this was the last, and she avoided answering all three of them).