Home > News and media > News > News archive > 2006 > ID Cards - LSE declines to issue further costings because of 'secrecy and contradictions'

 

ID Cards - LSE declines to issue further costings because of 'secrecy and contradictions'

The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) published the second report of its controversial 'Identity Project' on Sunday 15 January. The first report from the project| was published in June 2005 (see http://is2.lse.ac.uk/IDcard/default.htm|).

The latest report levels criticism at the government over the secrecy of the ID planning process, conflicting statements made by the Home Office and a disregard for Parliament's right to consider important costs and facts related to the scheme.

The report recommends that planning for the ID card be removed from the Home Office and given to Treasury. The report's authors argue that the Home Office is not the appropriate department to deliver or operate the scheme. 'In light of the numerous inconsistencies and conflicts that have emerged, serious unanswered concerns that remain, project dynamics that are dysfunctional and potential outcomes that may be harmful to the public interest we can now no longer support even the principle of an identity scheme owned and operated by the Home Office.' the report says.

The report observes: 'Dozens of questions about the scheme's architecture, goals, feasibility, stakeholder engagement and outcomes remain unanswered. These questions are outlined in this report. The security of the scheme remains unstable, as are the technical arrangements for the proposal. The performance of biometric technology is increasingly questionable. We continue to contest the legality of the scheme. The financial arrangements for the proposals are almost entirely secret, raising important questions of constitutional significance.'

For these reasons, the LSE team has declined to publish further costings for the scheme. In his introduction to the report LSE's Director, Sir Howard Davies observed: 'As this second report shows, the Government have not been very forthcoming in providing details of their proposals. The LSE team stands by the cost estimates outlined in its first report, but changes to the policy made by the Home Office make it difficult now to produce a definitive assessment of the total cost. Other government departments, if they wish to adopt the ID scheme, may opt in at a later date. Any estimates made of the cost of the current proposals may therefore significantly underestimate the total cost of the scheme in the longer term.'

Professor Ian Angell, head of LSE's Department of Information Systems said: 'We don't know what to believe any more. Contradictions, guesswork and wishful thinking on the part of the Home Office make a mockery of any pretence that this scheme is based on serious reasoning.'

Dr Edgar Whitley, reader in information systems at LSE said: 'We have been surprised at how little consistent or reliable information exists about the government's proposals. Claims are routinely made for the scheme and then just as quickly are abandoned or contradicted.'

Download the full report| (PDF)

Rebuttal re single author claim - 18 January

Prime minister Tony Blair, when questioned about the LSE Identity Project report at prime minister's question time on 18 January, said: 'As for the calculations made by the LSE, I think I am right in saying that this report, that was put out under the LSE's name, is actually written by someone who is actually a leading campaigner on civil liberty grounds .... So I don't think it's an entirely objective assessment.' 

LSE director Howard Davies has written to the prime minister to rebut this claim. 
Letter from Howard Davies to the prime minister, 20 January 2006
|  (posted 23 January)

Ends

Contacts

Press coverage

Financial Times
Ministers accused of using crime data to back policies (13 Feb 06)
With regard to the latest academic questioning of government actions, it is said that this comes against the background of a continuing dispute between LSE and the Home Office with regard to the true cost of proposed ID cards.
http://news.ft.com/cms/s/e42d23ae-9c35-11da-8baa-0000779e2340.html| 

Brown affirms his status as leader-in-waiting (13 Feb 06)
LSE has claimed with regard to the proposed ID card scheme that people who updated their old-style paper driving licences would have to pay £68 because they would also be issued with an ID card.
http://news.ft.com/cms/s/03603360-9c36-11da-8baa-0000779e2340.html| 

Guardian
Defence expert undermines Blair on safety of ID cards (13 Feb 06)
NATO and defence specialist Brian Gladwin said that the Labour government had got it wrong when they accused critics of producing a "technically incompetent report". They had accused the report's main author, a visiting fellow at LSE, Simon Davies, of bias because he is also a director of Privacy International, a human rights group that opposes ID cards.

Daily Telegraph
Ten reasons to oppose the ID card scheme (13 Feb 06)
Researchers from the LSE have estimated that the true cost of ID cards could be three times as much as the official Home Office figures.
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/
2006/02/13/do1303.xml&sSheet=/portal/2006/02/13/ixportal.html
| 

Daily Mail
Brown gets a hand on the reins as he comes to Blair's aid (13 Feb 06)
Researchers from the LSE have estimated that the true cost of ID cards could be three times as much as the official Home Office figures.

Daily Mirror
Road to ruin (13 Feb 06)

The Herald
ID cards: there are positive reasons to want them here (13 Feb 06) 

Observer
ID cards will provoke a national identity crisis (12 Feb 06) 

Sunday Times
I'm the new Kelly, says ID card critic (12 Feb 06) 

The Publican
What the Sunday papers said (12 Feb 06)
In the Sunday Times, Simon Davies, a visiting fellow at LSE, said that after he contributed to LSE research - which suggested ID cards would cost more than what the government claims - repeated criticism from ministers and Home Secretary Charles Clarke has threatened his livelihood.

Evening Standard
Three days of tests against the rebels (10 Feb 06)
Researchers from the LSE have estimated that the true cost of ID cards could be three times as much as the official Home Office figures.

United Press International
UK: Crucial defeat for ID cards scheme (24 Jan)
http://www.upi.com/InternationalIntelligence/
view.php?StoryID=20060124-012536-9373r
| 

Bloomberg News
UK Lords defeat government plan to make ID cards compulsory (23 Jan)
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=
10000102&sid=ascMXXONlNK4&refer=uk
| 

Metro London
ID cards: what will you pay?, p55 (23 Jan 06)
Reference to the LSE ID card study. 

Mail on Sunday
New Labour admits: We want ID cards to be made compulsory (22 Jan 06)
Researchers from LSE, predicted the true cost of ID cards to be three times higher than the official Home Office estimates. 

BBC News Online
ID cards 'should be compulsory' (21 Jan 06)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4633822.stm| 

Daily Telegraph
Comment: mistaken identity and the latest stealth tax (21 Jan 06)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/main.jhtml?xml=/
money/2006/01/21/cmian21.xml
| 

Times Online
Identity crisis (21 Jan 06)
Reference to the LSE ID card study.

The week on the web (21 Jan 06)
Researchers from the London School of Economics predicted the true cost of ID cards to be three times higher than the official Home Office estimates.

Register
Blair under fire on ID cards (20 Jan 06)
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/01/19/id_goveernment_cameron/| 

The Hindu
Blair rejects demands to drop ID card plans (20 Jan 06) 

Daily Telegraph
Cameron stands firm against ID cards (19 Jan 06)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/
2006/01/19/ntory19.xml&sSheet=/portal/2006/01/19/ixportal.html
| 

Times Online
Tories change tack again to oppose identity cards plan (19 Jan 06) 

EgovMonitor.com
Government dealt further blow on ID cards (18 Jan 06)
http://www.egovmonitor.com/node/4273|

Bloomberg
Blair says his government supports identity card plan (18 Jan 06)
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=
10000102&sid=ad8jVpCJKB00&refer=uk
| 

Computing
Government ID card bill suffers Lords setback (18 Jan 06)
http://www.computing.co.uk/computing/news/
2148786/government-id-card-bill-suffers
| 

BBC News Online
Cameron attacks ID cards scheme (18 Jan 06)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4624254.stm| 

Times Online
Peers deal Blair blow over '£19bn cost of ID cards' (17 Jan 06)
Howard Davies, director of LSE, said that his academics were not 'politically biased or mad', when they evaluated the ID cards cost at up to £19 billion, which is three times more than the Home Office official figures.

A touch of frost on ID cards is avoided in the Lords (17 Jan 06)
Researchers from the LSE have estimated that the true cost of ID cards could be three times as much as the official Home Office figures.

City AM
Lords defeat for ID cards scheme (17 Jan 06)
Researchers from the London School of Economics predicted the true cost of ID cards to be three times higher than the official Home Office estimates.

Guardian
Researchers fear IT disaster over launch of identity cards (18 Jan 06)
Researchers from the London School of Economics predicted the true cost of ID cards to be three times higher than the official Home Office estimates. 

Publish the costs or pay the price (18 Jan 06) 

Daily Telegraph
Lords defeats will not halt ID cards, says No 10 (18 Jan 06)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/
2006/01/18/nid18.xml&sSheet=/news/2006/01/18/ixhome.html
| 

Weblog
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/
opinion/2006/01/18/do1807.xml
| 

Australian, Australia
British ID card plan stumbles (18 Jan 06) 

XinHua, China
UK govt to press ahead with ID card plans (18 Jan 06)
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2006-01/18/content_4067200.htm| 

Politics.co.uk
ID card plans defeated over costs (17 Jan 06)

Scotsman
Government vows to press on with ID cards despite defeats (17 Jan 06)
http://news.scotsman.com/politics.cfm?id=80892006| 

What PC?
Lords trash ID card bill (17 Jan 06)

Computer Weekly

Government ID card plan hits buffer (17 Jan 06)
http://www.computerweekly.com/Articles/2006/
01/17/213718/GovernmentIDcardplanhitsbuffers.htm
| 

Metro London
ID cards scheme blocked by Lords (17 Jan 06)

Evening Standard
Ministers defiant after triple defeat on ID cards in the Lords (17 Jan 06)
Researchers from the London School of Economics predicted the true cost of ID cards to be three times higher than the official Home Office estimates. 

Financial Times
Treasury should take over project, says study (17 Jan 06)
A study conducted by the London School of Economics says that the Treasury should take over responsibility from the Home Office for the development of the ID card scheme. This is because the Home Office's predicted cost for the scheme has been shown by the same study to be three times lower than the realistically expected one.  
http://news.ft.com/cms/s/85837d82-86fd-11da-8521-0000779e2340.html| 

ID cards setback as peers demand detailed report on scheme's cost (17 Jan 06)
Researchers from the London School of Economics predicted the true cost of ID cards to be three times higher than the official Home Office estimates.
http://news.ft.com/cms/s/fcfba6e0-86fe-11da-8521-0000779e2340.html| 

BBC News Online
Ministers 'press on' on ID cards (17 Jan 06)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4619218.stm| 

Lords defeat for ID cards scheme (17 Jan 06)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4616356.stm
| 

Reuters
Government plans to press ahead with ID cards (17 Jan 06)

Independent
ID Cards Bill in crisis after peers inflict defeat (17 Jan 06)
http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/politics/article339073.ece| 

Leading article: Do the right thing and drop this wretched scheme (17 Jan 06)
http://comment.independent.co.uk/leading_articles/article339108.ece| 

Times Online
Peers deal Blair blow over '£19bn cost of ID cards' (17 Jan 06) 

Guardian
Government unbowed as peers inflict defeats on ID card bill (17 Jan 06) 

Daily Telegraph
Peers block identity cards over cost (17 Jan 06)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/
2006/01/17/nid17.xml&sSheet=/news/2006/01/17/ixnewstop.html
| 

Government suffers Lords defeats on ID cards (17 Jan 06) 

Daily Mail
ID card Bill thrown out by Lords over the cost (17 Jan 06)

The Australian, Australia
Cut & paste: Compelled by depression to abandon a fruitful career (17 Jan 06)
Reference to the LSE ID card study. 

Scotsman
Peers block Labour plan for ID cards after cost warning (17 Jan 06)
http://news.scotsman.com/politics.cfm?id=76852006| 

Daily Mirror
Peers in ID cards 'no' (17 Jan 06) 

Daily Express
Crushing defeat on ID cards (17 Jan 06)

PublicTechnology.net
ID Cards: Bill is blocked by Lords over massive likely costs & security issues (17 Jan 06)
http://www.publictechnology.net/modules.php?op=
modload&name=News&file=article&sid=4292 

Today Programme, BBC Radio 4 (16 Jan 06)
Simon Davies from LSE and Home Office minister Andy Burnham discussed the real cost of introducing compulsory id cards.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/today/listenagain/index.shtml|

Metro Manchester
Crunch vote on '£500' ID cards (16 Jan 06)

Security Document World
New LSE report on ID cards - 'scathing'  (16 Jan 06)
The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) has published a damning report on the introduction of biometric-based national ID cards in the UK. Similar to its first report, published last June, it gives few crumbs of comfort to those in favour of the UK's ID card, and is scathing of the government and its unwillingness to share details on the ID card planning process.
http://www.securitydocumentworld.com/public/index.cfm?&m1=
c_10&m2=c_4&m3=e_0&m4=e_0&subItemID=261
|

Times Online
Someone to watch over you (16 Jan 06)
William Rees-Mogg, writes about CCTV, identity cards and phone tapping. Reference to the LSE ID report study.

Daily Mail
Cameron calls ID cards 'unBritish' (16 Jan 06)
Conservative leader David Cameron called compulsory ID cards 'unBritish'. He also said: "The London School of Economics says it's £14.5 billion, that's half the Department of Education's budget..." The LSE is a persistent critic of ID cards and puts the final price at nearly three times Government estimates. 

Daily Express
Now ID cards could cost you £500 each (16 Jan 06)

The Register
Tory and Lib peers aim to ice ID cards until Blair's overthrow (16 Jan 06)
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/01/16/lords_bid_to_ice_idcards/| 

Guardian 
Worse than the dome (16 Jan 06)

Metro
Crunch vote on '£500' ID Cards (16 Jan 06)

Observer 
Drop this costly ID scheme (15 Jan 06) 

Business Online
Waste of a nation (15 Jan 06)
http://www.thebusinessonline.com/Stories.aspx?Waste%
20of%20a%20nation&StoryID=76421F93-8A57-4784-
943F-7ACA9E137B3C&SectionID=F60D3E05-7185-
44CB-BB45-97AC94420FD5
| 

Mail on Sunday
Blair facing defeat on ID cards as cost soars to £500 each (15 Jan 06)
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/
news.html?in_article_id=374149&in_page_id=1770&in_a_source=
|

Sunday Mirror
Blow to Blair as experts say identity card plan won't work (15 Jan 06)
The world-famous London School Of Economics - which is paid millions to examine Government plans - called for the scheme to be scrapped. The university calls the technical and security arrangements for the scheme "unstable" and accuses Ministers of misleading the public and denying MPs access to the facts. Comments from Dr Edgar Whitley, LSE.

Sunday Express
ID scheme slammed as useless (15 Jan 06)

Silicon.com
'Great iPod giveaway better idea than ID cards' (15 Jan 06) 

16 January 2006

Share:Facebook|Twitter|LinkedIn|