Home Office
China (re Golden Shield)
FBI (re NGI)


Surely not, Shirley
April 2010


Time was when the Home Office could just have an MP arrested if information they wanted to suppress was somehow leaked. (Which playwright could do justice to the dialogue that may take place in 32 days time between Sir David Normington KCB, Permanent Secretary at the Home Office, and Damian Green, the new Immigration Minister?)


It's not just MPs. The Home Office want the whole population to register their fingerprints and accept an ID card as a receipt.


But do these biometrics work? People keep telling us that they do. But the evidence is not compelling.


The Home Office now have an IBM report on the basis of which Sagem Sécurité have been given the contract to provide the biometrics needed for our proposed ID card scheme.


A freedom of information request was submitted asking the Home Office to publish the report so that we can all see whether our billions are being well spent.


Back came the answer: “disclosure could lead to offences such as terrorism”. Really?


If any UK citizen can’t prove his or her right to work in the country because the biometrics technology is too unreliable – and that’s what the Home Office propose – hard luck.


There’s more:

Biometrics "will make identity theft and multiple identity impossible. Not nearly impossible. Impossible."
David Blunkett November 2003

Individuals can only register once as their biometrics will be linked to a single identity, which will prevent the creation and use of multiple identities.
Home Office Section 37 cost report October 2006

"Biometrics give us the chance to have secure identity … By giving certainty in asserting our identity and simplicity in verifying it, biometrics will do away with the need for producing birth certificates, driving licences, NI and NHS numbers, utility bills and bank statements for the simple task of proving who we are ... Terrorists routinely use multiple identities – up to 50 at a time – to hide and confuse."
Tony Blair November 2006

Biometrics will tie an individual securely to a single unique identity. They are being used to prevent people using multiple or fraudulent identities … Over time, we will be able to link people to a single identity across our systems using biometrics.
Home Office December 2006

Using biometric technology we can permanently link people to a unique identity … With biometric visas to help lock down travellers to a single identity …
Home Office March 2007

Biometrics “will make it possible to securely link an individual to a unique identity, thus preventing the registration of multiple identities.”
Gordon Brown January 2008

"As the [ID] cards become more widely available the whole country will see real benefits for citizens, businesses and the country by giving a convenient and secure proof of identity that locks people to one identity".
Jacqui Smith January 2009

We plan to use all 10 fingerprints and facial biometrics to ensure someone can only enrol on the scheme once, thereby preventing multiple identities being established.
Dr Duncan Hine, Executive Director Integrity and Security Identity & Passport Service, January 2009

Labour insists the [National Identity Register], which will keep the fingerprints and biometric details of all new passport holders, is essential for preventing identity fraud and keeping Britain's borders safe … Mr Johnson [pointed] out the register was "the most effective way of preventing criminals or terrorists assuming a double identity".
Alan Johnson January 2010


About Business Consultancy Services Ltd (BCSL):
BCSL has operated as an IT consultancy since 1984. The past 7 years have been spent campaigning against the Home Office's plans to introduce ID cards into the UK. It must now be admitted that the government are much better at convincing people that
these plans are a bad idea than anyone else is, including BCSL.

Press contacts: David Moss,