Why we must oppose the Coalition’s Mandatory National IDs and Biometric Systems

Kittysjones here gives an excellent and very comprehensive account of the dangers posed by such ID cards in this new age of mass surveillance. She documents the schemes now being implemented to monitor and log information from our telephone calls, emails and tweets. These are causing serious concern. The French courts have already ruled biometric ID cards unconstitutional, and the UN Commissioner in charge of preserving freedom from the encroachment of a global surveillance society, Navi Pillay, has also criticised such schemes. These are not new fears. In 1981 President Mitterand of France declared ‘the creation of computerised identity cards contains a real danger for the liberty of individuals.’ Sir Noel Foley, the former chairman of Australia’s largest bank, Westpar, stated that ID cards would pose ‘a serious threat to the privacy, liberty and safety of every citizen’. When the Labour government under Blair launched the scheme for biometric cards, they were forced to drop it due to public opposition. Now the Coalition is reviving the scheme, and its consequent threat to our traditional liberties.

Politics and Insights

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The UK Government have started to roll out mandatory Biometric Global ID Cards. These will trace, track and store our information directly, wherever we go. This is now being implemented by the UK Border Agency. If you applied for a residence permit in a category that did not require you to enrol your biometric information and your application is granted on or after 1 December 2012 you must now apply for a biometric residence permit. Mandatory national ID cards violate essential civil liberties. They increase the power of authorities to reduce your freedoms to those granted by the card.

The Communications Data Bill (the Snooper’s Charter) never made it through the legislative process, yet the Secretary of State for the Home Department was asked by Dominic Raab how much her Department currently remunerates (a) telephone companies, (b)  internet service providers and (c) others annually for data storage; and what…

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