Identity Cards Bill
Lord Bassam of Brighton (Government Whip (technically a Lord in Waiting, HM Household); Labour)
My Lords, I respect the point made by the noble Lord. When we were preparing for the Bill and this issue came up by way of general discussion, I would have agreed with him, but robust testing and reputable scientific research from biometric experts underpin the assumption that the re-recording of biometrics every 10 years is sufficient for the identity card scheme.
We are happy with the science behind the scheme. We think that it will be sufficiently robust to work for that period. Studies conducted by the Communication and Electronics Study Group has clearly demonstrated that the card will be durable. That durability will cover the card's security features during that period.
However, we are in a fast-moving field of information science and technology. We must respect the advice that we have been given. There is no doubt that things have changed since we began to use such pieces of plastic, when the bank recalled them after two or three years. I remember that one of my bank cards lasted for about five or six years and I was very impressed by that and thought that I was getting quite a good service.