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2 July, 2008

Excess baggage

NØ2IDAccording to the Guardian, the chief executives of leading UK-based airlines have publicly made the, frankly rather obvious, observation that the compulsory introduction of national ID cards for 'airside' airport staff is the result of a programme desperately looking for an application rather than meeting a genuine need.

The government's central argument is that identification parameters offered by the ID cards scheme would be useful to aviation security. Fine, but two points:

  • Useful, not essential. I'll accept essential measures, involving the barest minimum of personal data, but nothing that merely makes security easier to administer.
  • If there is some essential functionality, why not incorporate it into the existing airport security system? The system already uses identity cards for staff, which presumably wouldn't be totally abandoned in favour of national ID cards, so why bother with two schemes at all? Other than as a spurious justification for the very existence of one scheme, of course.
Hmm. I'm repeating myself, but perhaps it's worth reminding people now that the issue's back in the news.


oh, come on, now. mandatory ID cards COMPLETELY PREVENTED the Madrid bombings, and COMPLETELY PROTECTED against the German-trained 9-11 terrorists.

surely we can fully expect them to help protect the UK just as effectively.

Posted by Saltation at July 3, 2008 11:51 PM
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