National ID Card and Register Consultation

Earlier today I attended a brief from the Home Office Minister Meg Hillier who was consulting on the forthcoming UK National ID Card and Register. I’m in no way a fan of surveillance and feel slightly queasy about ID Card, and I was invited as representative of The Druid Network, as a Faith Communities Consultee.

Many Pagan and Druid folk had expressed reservations about placing religious affiliation or belief onto the Register for fear of discrimination (which sadly still occurs), and I was able to confirm that these items will not appear either on the Card or in the Register database. Of course, religion is a subject of the Census now, and the ID card could be used by the appropriate authorities to secure this should they feel the need (unlikely I would think). However, the promise was made that no agency will have access to databases unless they have a valid need, so data-mining for any reason much less religion is hopefully impractical.

I remain sceptical and uneasy about the ID card in the same way that I feel uneasy and hostile toward CCTV cameras on every street corner. Folk say “if you have nothing to fear…” and I haven’t. Still uneasy though. Liberty probably express my personal reservations best. Worse, since persons accessing secure installations will require ID Cards before everyone else (though of course, it’s not compulsory) I will probably have mine by the end of next year, just after the air-side airport staff.

Here are links to the pro-ID camp, and the anti-ID camp. Go make your own mind up!


One response to “National ID Card and Register Consultation”

  1. “Folk say ‘if you have nothing to fear…’ and I haven’t.”

    Urgh, this argument is so counter-productive. The issue is a temporal and functional problem.

    I have nothing incriminating today, but when new laws are passed, may I will have or frequently do something that has been legislated against. Information cannot be unpublished, and so I’ve successfully incriminated myself for all future laws. Wahey!

    “However, the promise was made that no agency will have access to databases unless they have a valid need, so data-mining for any reason much less religion is hopefully impractical.”

    Unfortunately, this is untrue today, and is likely to remain so tomorrow. Three reasons, the government is attempting to move towards a central database (very silly), if agencies don’t have access, they’re just sent the CDs (haha), data inference from limited access or no access is a very real and revealing attack.

    Yes, I’m in the Anti-ID camp, primarily because every single piece of security discussion that has come from the government in regards to National ID cards has been unfounded and outrightly disproved.


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