Not quite….

The Chancellor suggested that biometric passports, which carry the same information as ID cards, would be sufficient.

In an interview in The Daily Telegraph today, he said there was “probably no need” to “go further” than the new passports, paving the way for ID cards to be scrapped. Although he claimed later that he wasn’t going beyond existing plans, his intervention could spell the death knell for the project.

It\’s still the National Identity Register which is the problem isn\’t it?

Or does that not matter if you don\’t actually have to have a passport?

It\’s been so long that we were all getting enraged about this I\’ve forgotten some of the details…..

3 thoughts on “Not quite….”

  1. Yes, it is the NIR that is the illiberal thing. The arguments against the Card are all practical ones: the system has no chance of working – simply taking the mode of recent sodding enormous govt IT projects, , there are problems with edge populations and the selected biometrics, how does it provide utility to civil society (which requires an easy – or, at least, readily available – way to validate both authenticity and holder), how do we secure the issuing process etc, etc. But, of its own and carrying basic information with no compulsion to own or to carry, it is no more illiberal than your driving licence, NI card, NHS card etc, etc.

    It is the Register, with the compulsion (£5k fine) to update and the storage (with huge sections of the civil service having access) of timeline data about your life, that is grotesque. Luckily, that is even less likely to work …

  2. Brian, follower of Deornoth

    “The Chancellor suggested that biometric passports, which carry the same information as ID cards, would be sufficient”

    Sufficient for what, pray?

  3. I was about to have a go at Brian for not reading the piece – but it appears that they haven’t actually put the interview online? Sneaky way to drive people to buy the dead-tree version…

    Anyway. “Sufficient” means “meet the security standards we’ve agreed with the Yanks and the rest of the EU that everyone ought to meet”. Nothing more.

    (& the NIR isn’t linked to the passport database at the moment, is it? – I read this as being ‘yeah, bugger the NIR, we can’t afford it, it’s a silly idea, it’ll probably fail and we don’t actually need it to go to America or if we ever want to join Schengen’…)

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