Feeds

Theresa May won't quit job over UK Border Agency fiasco

Home Secretary still standing despite relaxed checks row

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Home Secretary Theresa May confirmed today that she would not resign from her Cabinet position, despite the UK Border Agency fiasco that led to an unknown number of people entering the country without proper checks.

The minister told MPs sitting on the Home Affairs committee this lunchtime that "biometric tests were abandoned on a regular basis" without her authority.

May reiterated comments she made in an urgent statement to the House of Commons yesterday, which followed the suspension of UK border force chief Brodie Clark because of his "unauthorised actions" to relax border controls over the summer.

She said that there had been a pilot initiated in July, and that unauthorised actions had taken place where border officials had stopped cross-checking personal information and fingerprints against a Home Office database of terror suspects and illegal immigrants.

"I was not aware that the extension had taken place," said May. "I was not aware that this was what had been done."

Home Affairs committee chairman Keith Vaz asked the Home Secretary why "the good pilot was stopped?"

May said it was because unauthorised actions had been taken alongside the ministerially-endorsed pilot, which she added had been intended to cut through mandatory checks of "low-risk passengers". The idea had been that officials at ports could instead target individuals that posed a higher risk to security.

Vaz had earlier stated that the committee was "worried that your risk-based approach [with the pilot] would have allowed into this country gangs of people with children who are involved in human trafficking [possibly EU nationals]... the public would expect that the border is secure".

May said the government was "committed to stopping the terrible crime of human trafficking".

The Home Secretary added that border guards were expected to use their discretion to check "families" coming in whom they suspected of being organised gangs.

The committee confirmed it would ask immigration minister Damian Green to speak to MPs about the UKBA row. It will also invite Clark to appear for questioning.

"Brodie Clark must take full responsibility for his actions," said May, who gave a one-word response when asked if she would resign from her Home Secretary post.

"No," the Cabinet minister said. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
DOUBLE BONK: Testy fanbois catch Apple Pay picking pockets
Users wail as tapcash transactions are duplicated
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
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.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.