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8 June, 2006

Those holes again

Last month, the Government's own Information Commissioner's Office reported that individuals' private, personal data held by state agencies are routinely leaked to private investigators and hence such groups as insurers, creditors, journalists and criminals seeking to influence jurors, witnesses or legal personnel.  I mentioned it when the report was first released, but the Guardian, a little belatedly, provides more information.

Scarily, though unsurprisingly, ministers are beginning to reveal the expected hidden agenda: that all information will be interlinked for the state's mere convenience, and presence on the National Identity Register (with or without ID cards; they're of limited relevance) will be compulsory for access to public services.

Phil Booth, national coordinator of No2ID compares personal identity to the Titanic:

"They are talking about linking all the watertight compartments, so if one is holed, you go to the bottom of the sea."
The Guardian:
A YouGov survey of 2,000 people in April found that just 23% of respondents trust the government to deal with their data online, compared with 70% who trust their bank. If a bank fails to protect its customers' data, or links it in ways that customers don't want, it risks losing their business. Often, there is no alternative to the government.

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