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Cellphones Handhelds Privacy United Kingdom

UK 'Virtual ID Card' Scheme Set For Launch 84

Posted by timothy
from the bitte-ihre-telefon dept.
First time accepted submitter evrybodygonsurfin writes "The UK Government will announce details this month of a controversial national identity scheme which will allow people to use their mobile phones and social media profiles as official identification documents for accessing public services. People wishing to apply for services ranging from tax credits to fishing licences and passports will be asked to choose from a list of familiar online log-ins, including those they already use on social media sites, banks, and large retailers such as supermarkets, to prove their identity." I can't wait until carrying a telephone is mandatory. In the U.S. at least, how else will the government send you important messages?
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UK 'Virtual ID Card' Scheme Set For Launch

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  • by multicoregeneral (2618207) on Thursday October 04, 2012 @10:46AM (#41549069) Homepage
    Right? As long as everyone uses their real name on Facebook, this kind of system totally makes sense. As for me, I think I'll go to England, call myself Patrick Stuart, and apply for a passport. Hep hep, righto and such.
  • by loufoque (1400831) on Thursday October 04, 2012 @11:20AM (#41549459)

    Sometimes I enjoy thinking of what I would do if I were at the head of a country to improve society, and providing a service that allows a person to prove their identity to another party over the Internet is one of those.

    In real life, you can choose to show your ID card to someone to prove who you are, but there is no way to do something like this over the Internet, which might be useful to prove your age or nationality and access certain services.
    Likewise, you could use a mechanism to prove you are who you claim to be when you send a message to someone (digital signing). Solutions exist, but you always need to rely on a reference authority; it being the state is the most official authority there is.

    It seems however that in this case the execution is extremely poor, the possibilities limited, and security a problem. In particular, there is no need to put trust in private parties, it should be handled by the state. OpenID and similar technologies can already do the right thing without problems.

  • by CMYKjunkie (1594319) on Thursday October 04, 2012 @11:53AM (#41549811)
    I suppose that is my point: few criticize having a mailing address as burdensome in order to receive government services or communication, so "most" don't consider it a problem. With more and more people having mobile phone and smart phones, "a lot" to "many" don't consider it a burden and this will only increase over time to where, likely, the majority would not consider it odd or burdensome to have to have a telephone as a required/needed method of accessing a service.

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