Wednesday, November 28, 2007

UK ID card: it gets worse

Not only are the UK government pressing ahead with their identity card project, despite the recent blunders in which personal identity information for millions of people were lost, but they seem to be planning to share the identity information around:

Tories: Europeans could get access to UK ID database | The Register

A centralised identity card system is a bad idea because:
  • Hugely valuable data (in monetary terms) would be concentrated in one place.
  • Technical failure is inevitable. Such a system will be cracked and/or spoofed.
  • Social failure is inevitable. People granted access to the data as part of their job will either "lose" the data (as happened recently with the HMRC losing 25 million records) or will take the data for personal gain. The Stork system described in the above article makes this risk many times higher.
The only winners in this mess will be those selling the components of the proposed system to the government. They stand to make billions.

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