Saturday, 29 April 2017

ID system is potentially intrusive

"Many people will be pleased to see the death of SNP plans to use the Scottish NHS Register to help collect income tax and verify the identities of citizens signing up for online government services. Doctors in particular will be relieved at the end of the risks that some patients may avoid registering with a GP, or feeling that their confidential relationships are compromised."

"However, Scotland still has the legacy of a potentially very intrusive national identity system that has grown up in a highly ad hoc manner and urgently needs an overhaul perhaps even dismantling entirely. It may surprise people to hear that Scotland has a `national identity system`. If you looked for it on the statute books, you’d find nearly no mention of it at all. But the fact is that the key features of the widely disliked and now abandoned UK ID system, symbolised by the New Labour `Identity Card`, are shared by a parallel Scottish system."

"The UK ID system was deemed dangerous by campaigners because it had the clear intention of linking people’s personal information across government. The ID Card would be linked to a Unique ID number, which would be attached to every record about you in government."

"It would be trivially easy for a computer to search government records, and determine that you, Eric Blair, had got an average education, were currently unemployed, while appearing to stay at home more than was healthy for a job seeker and reading the wrong kind of library books for someone needing employment and training. From such `customer insights` New Labour hoped to target you with government `help`, and of course sanction you if you appeared to be avoiding your duties to the state..."

"The same kind of thinking appears to have been applied in Scotland."

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