Saturday, September 27, 2008

Data loss and ID cards

This week the new look "ID card" was unveiled. It is being trialed on foreign nationals, but make no mistake we are next. The Government persists in stating that ID cards will make us "safer". I have always been puzzled by this argument, as European Countries have problems with terrorism, crime and illegal immigration, as well as ID fraud. ID cards have not proved to be a satisfactory solution to those problems in Europe, so why is this going to be a miracle cure for Britain? The police in this country have the powers to arrest someone if they think they are being misled about their identity. They have to remain in custody until they can satisfactorily prove their ID. If you can whip out a soon to be faked ID card that is hardly likely to make us more safe.

An LSE study has estimated that ID cards are going to cost the taxpayers £20 billion. In these times it is a monumental waste of money. There is then the issue of the ability of the Government to stop others accessing our personal data. It has been confirmed today that the personal records of thousands of RAF personnel have been stolen from MOD premises this week. The MOD is likely to have a far higher level of security than your average government department, and this theft was from within a "high-security" area on the MOD site. I dont trust any Government department to keep my data safe, indeed with the child tax credit fiasco, they have lost it once already. It is time to stop this foolish waste of taxpayers money, and pull the plug on the ID card project.