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Old 19.03.2007, 21:25
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UK National Identity Scheme

The first ID interrogation and fingerprinting centres will soon be opening in the UK. The intrusive ID card interrogations will be used as the basis for the national identity database. If you are worried about this and the long-term implications for expats (who will also have to renew their UK passports at some point) then you may be interested to know that there is an expat branch of NO2ID, the non-partisan organisation campaigning in the UK against ID cards and the database state.

NO2ID is planning a day of protest on the 26th March ('ID day'). As their contribution to ID-Day, expat supporters will be conducting an e-mail lobby of the FCO, which is the passport issuing authority for British citizens living abroad.

Full details and the link to the FCO are on the NO2ID Expats’ Group website at http://no2id-expats.chown.ch/. All British citizens living outside the UK are invited to take part.
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Old 19.03.2007, 21:37
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

any substantiated facts on the ID card scheme?
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Old 19.03.2007, 22:26
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

A short question, but a good one!

ID cards are being implemented and the information that will be kept at the beginning is already defined (and extensive). The reasons given by the government for introducing ID cards are vague, probably deliberately so, but the implications are huge. There is very little reason to believe that the amount of information that will be stored will not grow with time.

The NO2ID site has lots of information and although some of it may well be emotive tub-thumping I think there are enough facts provided to make a good case against the current scheme.

Personally I think that ID cards are not necessarily a bad thing per se (the Swiss have them so they must be good ), and that non-forensic biometrics (such as iris scans) are probably a good way of making them more secure, but the cards should simply be able to prove that you are who you say you are whenever you choose to do so. Adding forensic information (such as fingerprints or DNA) and connecting the whole thing to a database is going to give the government (and all future governments) a lot more power over us than I think they can safely be trusted with. I hope I'm wrong on that front, but I don't really want to take the chance.
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Old 19.03.2007, 22:51
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

If I'm missing the point, then please explain it here rather than posting a link. Like many fellow countryfolk, I'm not a criminal. So why should I be concerned about having an ID card at all? Or my "home" government knowing my fingerprints, blood type, iris scan or whatever?

I'm not a provocateur, but I've really never understood why some people are against a national ID card.
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Old 19.03.2007, 23:15
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

There's something of the "I'm not a number, I'm a free man" in most Brits. But the only objection I can think of to the ID cards scheme is the cost...
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Old 19.03.2007, 23:41
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

Had an ID card for 15 years in the RAF. Never did me any harm!!
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Old 20.03.2007, 06:19
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

What good does it do me, an honest person?
Not cost, not principle, but what does it achieve?

1. How will it reduce benefit fraud?
2. How will it reduce terrorism?
at least...
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Old 20.03.2007, 07:17
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

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There's something of the "I'm not a number, I'm a free man" in most Brits.
...which is nonsense anyway. Last week I went to Cyprus and discovered a zillion places that offer English breakfast and show Football on big TV's (rather depressing actually). Just because those places were there, doesn't make them right.
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Old 20.03.2007, 07:18
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

the Swiss actually don't have an ID card, per say. Locals have a card which is optional and does the job of a passport and Johnny Foreigner has a permit with picture but I'd say less information is stored.

I still think the UK ID card scheme is not yet approved because.....the taxpayer is objecting to the cost of the scheme. That's where my objections come in.

Personally as a law-abiding non-resident, they can introduce the scheme and the Euro whilst they're doing it. Many will be leaving Ape Island anyway, once Gordon gets into Number Ten (and probably starting tomorrow when they drive their Chelsea Tractors en masse to Dover).

And there will still be 10s of thousands of illegal immigrants in the UK, which is one of the reasons behind the scheme.

Are non-residents compelled to get a card? And if so, how's that funded?
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Old 20.03.2007, 07:20
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

In a few years time you will be unable to do almost anything without producing such a card. It will emerge through creep. It helps the consumer industry, it helps government and surveillance. But at what cost to personal freedom and privacy ? And that is assuming it is used legally, and reasonably.

Think you can choose when to use it ?

"Yes Sir, that will be 869GBP for your LCD TV, Do you have a credit card ? "
"No I am going to pay cash."
"Mmmm how quaint. Well, we will need some ID from you."
"Here is my last TV licence bill and some banks statements"
"I'm sorry Sir (suspiciously) we only accept your ID card. Most people have them don't you know ?"


dave


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Personally I think that ID cards are not necessarily a bad thing per se (the Swiss have them so they must be good ), and that non-forensic biometrics (such as iris scans) are probably a good way of making them more secure, but the cards should simply be able to prove that you are who you say you are whenever you choose to do so. Adding forensic information (such as fingerprints or DNA) and connecting the whole thing to a database is going to give the government (and all future governments) a lot more power over us than I think they can safely be trusted with. I hope I'm wrong on that front, but I don't really want to take the chance.
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Old 20.03.2007, 07:34
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

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In a few years time you will be unable to do almost anything without producing such a card....

Think you can choose when to use it ?
If that happens, then so, what? I still don't see a problem.
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Old 20.03.2007, 07:44
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

1). Wait until someone steals your wallet from the gym changing room, or finds it on a bus. The average Joe does not question a recognisable ID, and even less so an "all-in-one" ID.

To get your life back, you will have to jump through so many security hoops, you could be recruited for the force as a police dog.

I know someone that has personal experience of this after being seriously mugged. Its still causing problems five years on.

2). Alternatively there is a file mixup and you are confused on the database with someone else. You report suspected fraud with someone using your ID, and your whole world explodes:
"I am a number, and a free man"
"Why don't believe I am this number ?"

3). Kids are fingerprinted at school to check out library books. Of course this will never be used as a suspect database.
Someone vandalises the headmaster's car.
Police officer : "We found some prints on the door handle... if only we could match them..."


There are many other examples
dave


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If that happens, then so, what? I still don't see a problem.
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Old 20.03.2007, 07:45
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

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In a few years time you will be unable to do almost anything without producing such a card. It will emerge through creep. It helps the consumer industry, it helps government and surveillance. But at what cost to personal freedom and privacy ? And that is assuming it is used legally, and reasonably.

Think you can choose when to use it ?

"Yes Sir, that will be 869GBP for your LCD TV, Do you have a credit card ? "
"No I am going to pay cash."
"Mmmm how quaint. Well, we will need some ID from you."
"Here is my last TV licence bill and some banks statements"
"I'm sorry Sir (suspiciously) we only accept your ID card. Most people have them don't you know ?"


dave
I doubt you will need an ID to pay in cash. What would be the point? An ID would be used as here (and yes I have one - and of course the holder pays here CHF30 as I recall) - at the Post to pick up stuff the postie couldn't deliver. If stopped by the police with your hand in someone else's safe, on a shop's premises at 4 am etc...
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Old 20.03.2007, 07:50
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

Try it and see. With the current obsession with money laundering, you may be surprised.

dave

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I doubt you will need an ID to pay in cash. What would be the point? An ID would be used as here (and yes I have one - and of course the holder pays here CHF30 as I recall) - at the Post to pick up stuff the postie couldn't deliver. If stopped by the police with your hand in someone else's safe, on a shop's premises at 4 am etc...
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Old 20.03.2007, 08:19
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

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Try it and see. With the current obsession with money laundering, you may be surprised.

dave
That may have some mileage. I was amazed in a UK supermarket a couple of years ago to see the checkout staff holding banknotes up to the light...
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Old 20.03.2007, 08:25
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

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I doubt you will need an ID to pay in cash. What would be the point? An ID would be used as here (and yes I have one - and of course the holder pays here CHF30 as I recall) - at the Post to pick up stuff the postie couldn't deliver. If stopped by the police with your hand in someone else's safe, on a shop's premises at 4 am etc...
Yes, I was asked to fill in a form whilst paying cash
"Shop policy" and I could not purchase without handing over details.

Now, if I'd used credit card or had a loyalty card, they could track my purchase, my habits, my spending etc.

Anonymous cash? Oh dear, I could be anybody...
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Old 20.03.2007, 08:31
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

Personally I think ID cards will be a disaster.

Firstly, as DaveA said, if there is a mixup - it just takes a wrong keystroke. I've twice had to do battle with the (UK) DVLA because someone elses points ended up on my licence - his driver number was one digit away from mine. OK they were only speeding but what if it had been a ban for drink driving and I only find this out because I've been pulled over? I am in serious trouble, if I'm lucky I just spend a night in the cells, if I don't get out from under I could be looking at 6 months in these circumstances.

Secondly, for the ID thief these cards will be a Godsend - your life is on these cards. It could have been worse, the original plan was to store the info on the chip on the card.

Thirdly it will cost a bomb. UK Governments of all persuasions have been startlingly inept at implementing major IT schemes, the schemes always seem subject to mission creep instead of nailing down the software requirements spec and writing to that spec. The result is massive cost overruns to give a product that, at best, only just works.

Fourthly how will it help combat crime, terrorism, immigration fraud or any of the other ways it has been sold to us? Do we really think the bad guys will be unable to clone ID cards or e-passports? With the passports it's already been done, cards won't be any different.
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Old 20.03.2007, 09:36
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

interesting that the starter of this thread set up the Account yesterday and this was the first post which has absolutely nothing to do with life in Switzerland and seems politically motivated as far as I can read

the UK government already has all the information it needs on every individual and all they are doing is formalising the databases so that the speak to each other in a structured way - whats wrong with that?

whats wrong with making sure that people have to prove their identity before receiving social security benefits or NHS free treatment? at least then the people who pay get treated instead of all the 'health tourists' falling ill on holiday in UK to get free treatment whilst the Brits have 6 month waiting lists

yes there are issues and in any democracy, and its how these issues are managed and controlled that are important rather than anarchists trying to destroy the proposal - unless of course they have something to hide
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Old 20.03.2007, 09:46
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

Richard, I agree with your comments about the motives of the OP and did almost remove it as it's spam-like.

But it's a good conversation piece too - there are both sides to consider:
  • Your right to "privacy". Of course we all register in Switzerland and it's not far from marshall law (think 5½ million cops in the country ). They know a lot - and for the law-abiding citizen, that should not be a problem.
  • The UK. CC-TV; loss of civil liberties; biometric passports already. High on the list of terrorist targets (but for example, ID cards would not stop 7th July attack). Think of the hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants in the country; should citizens be able to simply move and tell nobody (certainly in "officialdom")?
Online petitions are a waste of time. Convince me that anyone listens to the 1.8 million voters, sorry, folk who've signed the petition against road pricing?

In the UK, it does seem that the Honest Citizen gets lumped with all the crap and those who are less honest succeed in remaining undetected. Look at uninsured vehicles, plate cloning, etc - not a problem over there.

I won't be rushing to go back and live there.
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Old 20.03.2007, 09:50
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Re: UK National Identity Scheme

If you work in IT you will understand the major issue.Isolated islands of data used for specific reasons are no problem. When you give the govenment carte blanche to relate all the information it has on you for its own ends, they may find some very disturbing uses for it. It will happen, and by then it will be too late to do anything about it.

Additionally, this data will end up in the hands of commercial enterprises. To doubt this is being naive.

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the UK government already has all the information it needs on every individual and all they are doing is formalising the databases so that the speak to each other in a structured way - whats wrong with that?
Many, many , many things: the principle, the implementation, the reality, personal freedoms, the cost,the effectiveness, the ramifications ...
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whats wrong with making sure that people have to prove their identity before receiving social security benefits or NHS free treatment? at least then the people who pay get treated instead of all the 'health tourists' falling ill on holiday in UK to get free treatment whilst the Brits have 6 month waiting lists
...and then before you know it you are living in a police state, because the measures are driven through based on apathy of the populace. People are trying to destroy the proposal because it does more to threaten real freedom in the UK, than just about any measure in the last fifty years.
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yes there are issues and in any democracy, and its how these issues are managed and controlled that are important rather than anarchists trying to destroy the proposal - unless of course they have something to hide
dave
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