Thursday, August 11, 2005

LSE respond to government criticism on ID cards

The LSE have produced a 30 page response to the government's criticisms of their Identity Project report. This press release gives a brief overview,

The Home Office document contains some interesting elements and we welcome the fact that the project team are engaging more fully with critics. But we are disappointed that the HO response contains substantial material errors and misrepresentation of fact. It also sets out rebuttals that cite material which is not relevant to the points in question. On a number of critical issues, HO's response rebuts aspects of the LSE report without providing alternative data (for example, on assumptions relating to population data, card loss and damage rates and the card replacement rates due to change in personal circumstances).

It is equally disappointing that the Home Office has chosen to disregard the vast majority of the LSE report. Comprehensive sections on identity fraud, policing, crime, national security, counter-terrorism, discrimination, international obligations and the UK IT environment have been ignored. Even within the two narrow areas that were chosen for rebuttal (cost projections and the alternative blueprint) 80 per cent of the relevant parts of the LSE report - some 25,000 words of analysis of costings and alternative approaches - are not commented upon.

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