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Clause 1 — The National Identity Register

Part of Orders of the Day — Identity Cards Bill – in the House of Commons at 5:30 pm on 18th October 2005.

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Photo of Andy Burnham Andy Burnham Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office) 5:30 pm, 18th October 2005

I want to make progress to answer some of the points that Members have raised during the debate.

Let me make one thing clear to my hon. Friend Lynne Jones: it is not and never has been our intention to create an elaborate database that would hold detailed personal profiles for every individual. Rather, it is our intention to create a system that takes basic personal facts about each of us—name, address and date of birth—which are already held on databases, such as those for passports or the DVLA, and link them to a unique personal identifier, such as a fingerprint or an iris scan.

Annotations

Chris Lightfoot
Posted on 19 Oct 2005 5:42 pm (Report this annotation)

"... it is not and never has been our intention to create an elaborate database that would hold detailed personal profiles for every individual"

If this is so, why does the Bill (in schedule 1 s.9) specify that the information stored in the National Identity Register will include, "particulars of every occasion on which information contained in the individual’s entry has been provided to a person"? That "audit trail" information will build up a record of every occasion on which a cardholder shows their card, to whom and where. Since, according to the government's Regulatory Impact Assessment, one would have to show one's card whenever going to a doctor or a hospital, or to use other public services, or even when shopping, the "audit trail" will build up a detailed and intrusive picture of each cardholder's everyday life. If this is not an "elaborate database" holding "detailed personal profiles", what would be?

Paul Mitchell
Posted on 20 Oct 2005 1:19 am (Report this annotation)

Chris,

It sounds to me like your "audit trail" would be exactly what any government would love to have: an accurate, detailed, accessible and, yummy, centrally-held profile of every entitled citizen's use of government-funded services.