ID Cards consigned to History by Home Office's first Bill!

The Identity Documents Bill received Royal Assent yesterday.

All ID cards will be cancelled within one month of Royal Assent and the National Identity Register, the database which contains the biographic information and biometric fingerprint data of card holders, will be physically destroyed within two months.

The Identity Card Scheme represented the worst of government. It was intrusive, bullying, ineffective and expensive.

The coalition Government is committed to scaling back the power of the state and restoring civil liberties. This is just the first step in the process of restoring and maintaining our freedoms.

The Identity Documents Bill invalidates the identity card, meaning that within one month, holders will no longer be able to use them to prove their identity or as a travel document in Europe. Following Royal Assent, a counter will be placed on the Identity and Passport Service (IPS) website counting down the time until cards become invalid.

The Identity Card Scheme and associated work around biometrics has already cost the taxpayer £292 million. It will stop planned future investment in the scheme of £835 million.

All existing cardholders will be notified in writing and the Identity and Passport Service will now inform international border agencies, travel operators and customers of the change in law.

0 thoughts on “ID Cards consigned to History by Home Office's first Bill!

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  2. “ID Cards consigned to History by Home Office’s first Bill!”

    Now what about consigning our version of DOMA (i.e. the dichotomy between civil partnerships and marriage) to history as well! Both civil partnerships and marriage should be available to straight and gay people – don’t you agree, as Minister for Equalities?

  3. Well that is a good result.

    Can we have an update on Gary Mackinnons and Nick Cleggs ever changing position on him.

    Also, now you’re in charge what’s happening about the police DNA database after the Europeans Courts ruling.

  4. “The identity card scheme represented the worst of government.”

    I’m not sure this was ever true but it sure ain’t now.

  5. I disagree Adam, ID cards very much summed up Labour’s hatred of civil liberties and it’s great they’ve been done away with.

    That said, if the Lib Dems love civil liberties so much how come they want to evict innocent people to be evicted from their homes simply based on allegations of abuse. No evidence needed, no trial, they don’t even get to see a judge.

    Surely that’s an even more backward approach to justice/freedom than any ID card?

  6. The irony is that we need a secure electronic method for online identification, the more so now that more and more public services are going to be implementing as much as possible of their admin and even service delivery online.

    EU countries with established ID Cards have been updating them to hold secure eID data (digital certificates), and have done that with the protection of legal restraints on the use to which the data can be put. Germany in particular has had to introduce carefully crafted legislation, because under previous law the central state could not keep records – it was the lande (equivalent to our Counties and UAs) that kept records.

    The USA federal govt is taking a different line: no ID cards, but instead stimulating thoughts about a common method to hold, and use online, a safe and secure digital identity. We will hear more about that this year.

    My question a couple of years ago to Meg Hillier (then Minister for ID cards) was “why do we not do eID?”, and her answer was “we have to walk before we can run”. She revealed there the inability of Home Office to cope (I only note that it helps when asking a question to already know what the answer is).

    A curious alliance of Cabinet Office and Dept of Health is currently moving along with the G-digital idea for secure online services, and it looks more and more as if they are attempting to morph bank cards into eID cards. This horrifies me (although I have worked out that one could in principal have a non-bank issuing cards to the same specification, with behind their service a registration scheme at least as good as that operated by banks when you apply for a bank account). Not really very good on equality, Lynne, is it?

    So why don’t we issue eID cards (later adding to the scheme eID tokens to hold in mobile phones)? Because UK govt doesn’t do ID cards any more, so UK govt proposing hiding behind the banks who will be issuing us with enhanced versions of the ID cards (debit/credit) that they already give to a lot of us (but not to everybody, although most people should be able to get a basic bank account and thus a card, either directly from a bank or via a Credit Union).