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National ID cards - good idea?


Gringo
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Are you in favour of a national identity card?  

141 members have voted

  1. 1. Are you in favour of a national identity card?

    • Yes
      59
    • No
      83


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In light of the events in London and to a lesser extent, Birmingham, how do people feel about the governments nationa id card scheme? You will have to pay a few hundred quid to get one that contains info on you, including a retinal scan and otehr vital info, then stored on a central database. In principle I don't have a problem with carrying id, I have to for work and usually have it on me when not working just in case. The question is would such a card help prevent terror attacks in the UK, or are they just the governments way of getting us on a database so they are privvy to all sorts of pesonal info which you would rather they weren't?

I persoanlly don't think such cards will help prevent attacks, people can find ways around them for a start.

Unfortunately, the previous thread bearing this title seems to have got lost, so at the risk of boring you all, I thought I'd resurrect it. From the google archives, it appears the score before was 48-38 against. Has the mood changed?

In order to supply some completely unbiased ( :lol: ) opinion, here's a couple of recent articles to do with security of personal data:

Fury as Straw hands over your private records to Euro snoops

Medical records and other highly personal details of British citizens' lives are to be handed to foreign governments under a right-to-snoop deal with Europe.

Britain will also give our European partners unprecedented access to details of our sex lives, religious, philosophical and political beliefs and trade union membership.

Under new judicial co-operation rules, European authorities --including government departments, police and local councils - will be able to demand intimate background checks on victims of crime, witnesses and informants, as well as suspects.

No high-tech scanners for Commons over fears terrorists could chop off MP's finger to get in

Plans to use fingerprint scanners to control entry to the Commons have been abandoned over fears that terrorists could cut off an MP's finger to get inside.

Security advisers have warned that a suicide bomber would have no compunction about removing a politician's finger to fool scanners.

....

All new passports and ID cards will be encoded with our fingerprints and checked by scanners at airports and ports.

But MPs and other parliamentary passholders will not now face the same checks to enter the Commons. Instead, they will have to type in a cash-machine-style PIN code.

A spokesman for the No2ID protest group said: "If they don't think fingerprint scanners will work for 650-odd MPs, how do they think they will cope with 60 million of us?"

And more interesting a comment on a US blog, relating to the idea of privacy and what it really means to different people. An attempt to debunk the idea of "nothing to hide" and highlight the dangers that such complacency may bring.

Government Surveillance Threatens Your Freedom, Even If You Have Nothing To Hide

For several years I have been reading the work of George Washington University Law School Professor Daniel J. Solove, who writes extensively about privacy in the context of contemporary digital technology. The current apathy about government surveillance brought to mind his essay "'I've Got Nothing To Hide' And Other Misunderstandings of Privacy."

Professor Solove's deconstruction of the "I've got nothing to hide" position, and related justifications for government surveillance, is the best brief analysis of this issue I have found. These arguments are not easy to zap because, once they are on the table, they can set the terms of the argument. As Solove explains, "the problem with the nothing to hide argument is with its underlying assumption that privacy is about hiding bad things." He warns, "Agreeing with this assumption concedes far too much ground and leads to an unproductive discussion of information people would likely want or not want to hide." Solove's bottom line is that this argument "myopically views privacy as a form of concealment or secrecy."

In his work, Solove addresses the reality that privacy problems differ: Not all are equal; some are more harmful than others. Most importantly, he writes, "to understand privacy, we must conceptualize it and its value more pluralistically." Through several years of work, Solove has developed a more nuanced concept of privacy that rebuts the idea that there is a "one-size-fits-all conception of privacy."

The concept of "privacy" encompasses many ideas relating to the proper and improper use and abuse of information about people within society. Privacy protects information not only because it would cause others to think less of the person at issue, but also simply to give us all breathing room: "Society involves a great deal of friction," Solove writes, "and we are constantly clashing with each other. Part of what makes a society a good place in which to live is the extent to which it allows people freedom from the intrusiveness of others. A society without privacy protection would be suffocation, and it might not be a place in which most would want to live."

Professor Solove's work -- much of which he makes available online -- helps clarify thinking about privacy in its fuller context, and helps explain what is wrong with reductive dismissals of privacy using the mantra, "I've got nothing to hide." Before rushing to give the Bush Administration more ways to invade our privacy, not to mention absolving those who have confederated with him to engage in the most massive invasion of America privacy ever, members of Congress should look at Solove's work. Too many of them have no idea what privacy is all about, and grossly underestimate the value of this complex and essential concept.

Solove's full essay is available to download here (pdf)

A really interesting piece of work, and it does help frame the conversation. Blurting out "if you've got nothing to hide" without reference to such work tends to weaken the argument on that side. The idea that privacy is a multiple and different thing, with different meanings to different people in various situations I believe is aimed at reducing the complacency of sleep-walking into a surveillance society.

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I dont mind having an ID card.

I DO mind having to pay for it

Well at least you're consistent, last time you were also first to respond, though you words were slightly less cagey

ID cards? Yes

Paying £300 for one? they can **** right off

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most people already have one its called a passport - haven't we had this thread before?

Yes we have, its disappeared (and we can't find it) so Gringo asked for permission to start a new one, which was granted

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disappeared or deleted by some sort of political sabotage?

Hmmm I think we should have an enquiry into it going missing, plus Chris hasn't been seen for a while and he worked for the government.

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I had thought you had done a bit of a david kelly on CV, stolen his ID and deleted the offending article.

As per rantin, your first reply is remarkably similar to that on the previous thread, so again - top marks for consistency.

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Has anybody actually come up with a good reason for having them yet? Depriving everybody of another chunk of their civil liberties, not to mention a huge wad of cash; there'd better be.

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If they was free then yeah i would have one but some of the prices that was been thrown about 60-300??? No thanks you can get a passport for 40ish (thats how much they was when i last applied for one untill the doctor wanted 20pound to sign the back of my photo told him to jog on!)

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If they was free then yeah i would have one but some of the prices that was been thrown about 60-300??? No thanks you can get a passport for 40ish (thats how much they was when i last applied for one untill the doctor wanted 20pound to sign the back of my photo told him to jog on!)

Passports are just over £70 now

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I voted no on this for a few reasons, the first being that we will have to pay for it and at the last look it was a lot of money, the unemployed would have theirs subsidised so our taxes would be used to pay for those.

Secondly, recent investigations have proved that if they can forge passports already they will do the same with ID cards. So the genuine citizen gets shafted again. I mean they cant control who is in the country at the moment so it wont work.

Lastly i dont like what sort of information will be on there, what they say will be on there and what will be on the when finally released are two different things. DNA will will be too much for the government to resist. If they can add a cup game ticket to your season ticket card without having the card there what would they be able to put on your ID card??? add this system to the one they want to put on everyones car to track them for one reason and another and we will be in the governments control yet the criminals will be laughing.

The only people who will be controlled would be law abiding citizens

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I don't see why it's seen as such an invasion of privacy / liberties etc. Most countries in Europe have them and no one I know has a problem with that. It's a uniform ID that everyone will have to carry making security much simpler and could well take the place of a passport for at least travel within the EU.

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If they was free then yeah i would have one but some of the prices that was been thrown about 60-300??? No thanks you can get a passport for 40ish (thats how much they was when i last applied for one untill the doctor wanted 20pound to sign the back of my photo told him to jog on!)
Ooooh no, the price of passports have magically increased to £72, with it scheduled to rise to £85 in the next three years. It's the world paper shortage don't ya know and nothing at all to do with making the price of an ID card seem reasonable.
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I don't see why it's seen as such an invasion of privacy / liberties etc.
Then read the above linked essay by Solove which will at least you give you a view on why some people think these measures are dangerous.
Most countries in Europe have them and no one I know has a problem with that.
Keeping up with the jones' is not the best motive for directing policy. The question should be is if it is a good thing or not, not whether everyone else is doing it.
It's a uniform ID that everyone will have to carry making security much simpler and could well take the place of a passport for at least travel within the EU.
We have an ID that makes travel within the EU simple - it's called a passport and it's optional. It's not compulsory for any other services and so this argument in itself cannot support an ID card system imposed upon everyone.
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If someone from the government can explain to me how having an ID card will prevent terrorism in this country (which is their remit for introducing them ),taking into account the last few attacks were carried out by British Citizens , then I may be prepared to listen to them

however as they can't , they can shove them where the sun don't shine

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In the US we all theoretically have national ID cards when we are given a Social Security number at birth...
In which case, why did crazy george try to steamroller through the REAL ID bill?
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I don't see why it's seen as such an invasion of privacy / liberties etc. Most countries in Europe have them and no one I know has a problem with that. It's a uniform ID that everyone will have to carry making security much simpler and could well take the place of a passport for at least travel within the EU.

Exactly. Phone tapping and internet connection tapping is an invasion of privacy. Having to carry around a card with personal details and dna on it and stuff isn't too much hassle.

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