Archive for the ‘surveillance UK. identity’ Category

BTC — Imagine members of the hit reality TV show, Jersey Shore, unable to drive suddenly because they weren’t able to provide the right Papers.  What could be worse? If the network couldn’t hire them because of a technicality on their government issued IDs.

Here’s a follow up from Ed Hasbrouck, posting mail from a New Jersey citizen whose genius Garden State government went ahead with adopting Real ID compliant regs as law.

“I am a natural born citizen of the United States, born and raised in the State of New Jersey. I have lived here most of my life. I have never been convicted of a felony nor even a misdemeanor. I have never been arrested, nor even ever received so much as a parking ticket. I do not receive any funds from Welfare, Social Security, or any other government program. I am not a terrorist.

Yet, in the State of New Jersey, it is illegal for any employer to hire me, and has been for about the last 6 years.”


Here is second life for news that matters.

REAL ID Act making it hard for legal immigrants to renew driver licenses

TSA pat down despite medical ID card — Don’t miss priceless explanation from TSA’s Pistole-bot.

Austin PD bone up on social media, high tech crime investigations 

Ohio Appeals Court Strikes Down GPS Vehicle Spying

Internet firms co-opted for Internet [data] surveillance

No2ID reports the UK’s National Healthcare Database is still a threat to privacy

“NO2ID along with our friends in the NHS Confidentiality Campaign have
long argued that electronic records might well be beneficial to
patients, and many GPs are using them – but that is not the same as
creating a system where privacy barriers are torn down, and all
medical records are potentially available anywhere depending on
official whim.”

US Attorney General defends EU data sharing agreement

SEE ALSO: MEPs voice concerns over SWIFT data transfers

European politicians have voiced their concerns over the way Europol is handling requests for data from the US under the controversial SWIFT scheme, which gives the US the ability to access bank transfer information that it suspects has links to terrorism.


ABU DHABI – The Emirates Identity Authority (Eida) has fixed a five-year validity period for Emirati national ID cards because of the five-year life span of the electronic chip in the card, the authority explained yesterday in a statement.

BTC – It looks like the US’s ID card contract loss is UAE’s gain to incorporate technologies in national ID cards. The Saudis put in a purchase order ID cards from US companies.  Regardless of US foreign relations standards in the middle east, you would hope a little bit more of that Egyptian style of populist push back would infect the UAE.

The escalated potential of being singled out as an undesirable by the State is the fate of any resident who adopts the national ID card. Disenfranchised groups are usually the first to opt-out of such a system.

For example:

“Bedouins also complain that the government has marginalised them from modern Egyptian society. Today, many do not hold national ID cards and are more loyal to their tribal chiefs than the state.”   c/o Al Jazeerah

Here is second life for International news that matters:

INDIA: UIDAI identity authorities manipulated pilot test results to necessitate national ID contracts

UK: London council makes world’s first citizen data transfer

US: United States reneges on SWIFT financial data privacy agreement

BTC – Today I heard about the retirement of Phillip Booth, a hero in the international fight against national ID cards and data surveillance.  Phil led the UK to the first of several victories in the nation’s fight against eruptive onslaughts of gestating identity programs.

“No one should underestimate the debt the whole country owes to Phil Booth. His incredible energy and hard work has been key in making NO2ID the fastest growing and most successful campaign group in modern British history, killing the Home Office’s identity scheme dead. Our task now is to use that invaluable legacy and experience and take the fight to the surveillance state.” — Guy Herbert, Phil Booth’s successor

Booth led NO2ID six years from inception through this February, 2011.

Without a doubt, Booth’s conscientious delivery towards the goal of protecting citizens from identity abuses will be what he is known for.

There was talk that he would return to a life as sculpture artist.

One could see the allure of having achievements carved in stone or cast in metal.  The evidence of legislative art is more akin to a sand mandala; which upon completion is then taken by monks and dumped into the river to return to the earth.  This type of work is symbolic, impermanent and eternally slavish to the process of death. The iterations of strength are exercised as freedom from attachment. However, this disallows observance of a more final permanent work past the hourly, weekly, monthly and even yearly institution of the labors granted.

Activism as an artform doesn’t necessarily ground to renew with impartiality. One can be left imbued with a visceral understanding of the baser natures of man creatures.  The experience taken in excess or without adequate relief will make one recalcitrant, apathetic or insensitive to legal versions of collateral damage resulting in compassion fatigue.

Reporting and news sources don’t help longevity of messaging.  They can turn over the foundation of great work like a faddish “hit”; which came and went in the washes of a 24 hour news cycle.  It can be about as satisfying as being fed into a hamburger grinder.

Some of us certainly feel a loss in arms, possibly envy, as Booth returns to the mystery of life-in-general or life after the charitable fight.

The following clip is relatable.  In the film Alien 3, the beleaguered protagonist Ripley is caught off guard and unarmed by a pursuant alien.  The team was not yet free of the consumptive menace of her alien foe or of the fight itself.

c/o No2ID UK  –The Cabinet Office has outlined plans for a new Public Data Corporation which the government intends to set up this year. The Cabinet Office press release states:

“The Corporation will, for the first time, bring together Government bodies and data into one organisation and provide an unprecedented level of easily accessible public information and drive further efficiency in the delivery of public services.”

Little detailed information is available at this time.


Among the most dedicated opponents of the Blair government’s Identity Cards Act were the SNP. However, as the government of Scotland they seem to have other ideas, as Geraint Bevan, coordinator of NO2ID Scotland, explains:

UK ID cards are no longer valid, but National Entitlement Cards (ID cards by another name) continue to be issued in Scotland. These multi-purpose cards, which masquerade under a wide range of guises including concessionary travel and YoungScot cards, are issued by local authorities and provide access to various services.

According to ministers, the cards are voluntary and alternative means of accessing services should be made available, except for concessionary travel. In practice, many schoolchildren have been told that they *must* apply for a card to buy school meals – or even to enter school premises.

Each card is linked to a “Citizens Account” unless card-holders explicitly reject data-sharing on the application form. Citizens Accounts are records of personal information stored on a network of databases operated by Scotland’s 32 local authorities.

Even when not linked to a Citizens Account, the cards are privacy deficient. For example, when used as a bus pass, personal information about the card-holder is transmitted to the bus operator and details of the passenger and journey are recorded and logged on central government

The scheme was introduced under the previous Labour/Lib Dem coalition, but has continued under the current SNP administration.

Related news: TrackCare, A new Patient Management System for Scotland goes live.


ID Card Report Was Supressed

The publication of a report which raised concerns about the ID-scheme was delayed – leading to the suggestion that it was suppressed in the run up to the general election. The report by the Independent Scheme Assurance Panel (ISAP) was given to the Home Office in late 2009, but
only published this month. A February 2010 response to the ISAP report has also been released.

NHS (National Health System)review includes Opt-Out forms

The Summary Care Record system will make medical information about tens of millions of patients in England available to over 800,000 NHS staff. Patients have a right to opt out of having a Record. Both the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats promised to scrap Summary Care Records before they took power.

A judgement by the European Court of Human Rights ruled that it was illegal for the Government to keep the DNA details of those arrested – but not convicted – for an offence.

EU/US: Transatlantic eHealth agreement signed 01-17-02011–Vice-President of the European Commission Neelie Kroes and United States Secretary for Health and Human Services (HHS) Kathleen Sebelius signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in Washington to promote a common approach on the interoperability of electronic health records and on education programmes for information technology and health professionals. [The US healthcare bill was repealed two days later.]

Border Agency plans £36.4m biometric collection contract

Destruction of ID card data to cost £400,000

“The ID card was launched with fantastic claims about supposed benefits. In truth, it represented the worst of government. The first duty of government is to ensure its citizens are protected, but ID cards could never have done that. They would have been a distraction from the real work that needs to be done in countering terrorism, illegal immigration or benefit fraud.” 

– Damian Green, GUARDIAN


NO2ID statement on the Royal Assent to the Identity Documents Act 2010

Issued c/o NO2ID’s Phil Booth

NO2ID is, of course, glad to see with the passing of the Identity Documents Bill the death of the ID Cards scheme and the monstrous National Identity Register that it created.

However, while NO2ID welcomes evidence that all copies of the Register are being destroyed, powers retained from the original Identity Cards Act still allow the Home Secretary to potentially enact the same enforced data-sharing across government that NO2ID has campaigned against from the beginning *. To dismantle the ID Cards scheme but leave powers it rested upon in place leaves the people of Britain vulnerable to a resurrection of the scheme.

Also, with biometric identity cards for the UK now a thing of the past, it is a shame that residents and workers from outside the EEA must undergo the same experience and are being used to justify the continued existence of much of the technical infrastructure of ID cards: the Biometric Residence Permit ** remains in place, unchanged. Do the principles that led to the scrapping of ID cards for EU citizens not apply to those other legal residents?

This partial abolition is an excellent first step, but the Government should now take the courage to override the deep laid bureaucratic plans, and finish the job. NO2ID will not stop until the database state powers that would allow mass surveillance and official trafficking in personal information are erased for good.”

*[To wit, the enforced sharing of your full name and any other names by which you are or have been known; your gender; your date and place of birth; your biometrics (which could still include your fingerprints); the address of your principal place of residence in the United Kingdom; the address of every other place in the UK or elsewhere where you have a place of residence; the times at which you were resident at different places in the UK or elsewhere; your current residential status and all previous residential statuses; information about numbers allocated to you for identification purposes and about the documents to which they relate – which could mean your driving licence, National Insurance or even your NHS number. We note the latter was specifically *excluded* from the 2006 Act.]

**Variously billed by the Home Office as “ID cards for foreigners” as if it were part of the National Identity Scheme, but in fact introduced under the UK Borders Act 2007.