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NO2ID Supporters' Newsletter No. 45 - 11th May 2006

Join our 'Renew for Freedom' campaign in May

Now is the time to renew your passport and promote our 'renew for freedom campaign'. This is a once only campaign so spread the word. Tell everyone you know - mail your friends and colleagues directly, write letters to your local newspaper saying why you've renewed your passport and encouraging others to do the same. You can also tell them about our website (www.renewforfreedom.org), which contains details of the campaign and a factsheet about passport renewal.

Remember a 10 year passport will cost £51 and last until after the next election. Soon the government will require UK citizens to attend interrogation centres to be fingerprinted like criminals, numbered like cattle and entered onto the government's big brother database the National Identity Register(NIR) at a cost of £93. It is quite possible that from later this year the UK Identity and Passport Service(UKIPS) could start collecting data of people renewing passports and storing it in a holding database, ready to be transferred to the National Identity Register at a later date.

Local groups around the country have been promoting the campaign in local newspapers and on the radio, and stunts such as NO2ID Glasgow's photo op at the passport office in Glasgow next week are planned throughout May. An ever growing list of organisations are now signed up to the campaign including Liberty, Privacy International, Statewatch, UKIP, the Liberal Democrats and Our World Our Say who ran a full page advertisement in the Independent promoting our action.

Let's send a message to the government - we don't want ID cards or a National Identity Register. £51 spent in May could prove to be one of the wisest investments you and your family ever make in their privacy and freedom. It's that simple.

For more details and to download our factsheet go to http://www.renewforfreedom.org/

What's next?

New local groups

We now have local groups in Llandeilo in Wales, Helensburgh in Scotland and Highbury in London.  A list of groups (and a new interactive map) can be found at www.no2id.net/localGroups

11th May -  Swindon NO2ID Meeting

Thursday, 11th May 7.30pm at the Clifton Inn , Clifton street (off Kings Hill), all welcome. Contact Lynda at swindon@no2id.net for more details.

11th May - North West Information Managers Conference- Stockport

Thursday, 11th May 2006 at Stockport Town Hall. Phil Booth, NO2ID National Coordinator, will be addressing the day-long conference which includes contributions from NADPO, lawyers, journalists, the National Consumer Council and the Information Commissioner's Office. More details here: http://www.actnow.org.uk/NW.htm

11th May — Southwark NO2ID planning meeting and social

Thursday, 11th May 7.00pm at the Barrowboy and Banker pub, 6-8 Borough High Street, London Bridge. Further dates have been arranged for the next month:14th May: leafleting shoppers at Southwark Tesco, 27th May: leafleting shoppers at Borough Market. Southwark NO2ID are also trying to arrange a public meeting in June with MPs or politicians from the LibDem, Conservative and UKIP parties. For more info or if you are able to help contact Martin Smith, southwark@no2id.net, 07974672112

13th May - Glasgow NO2ID, stall in Glasgow city centre

If the weather is fair on Saturday afternoon(13th May) there will be a NO2ID stall in Buchanan Street. If the weather is poor we may instead do some discreet subterranean leafleting. If you want to join us, contact the group at glasgow@no2id.net. If you see us about, why not say hello and grab a badge or buy a T-shirt?

15th May — Renew for Freedom in Glasgow

Monday, 15th May 10:00am at Glasgow Passport Office, 96 Milton St, Cowcaddens. We need as many local NO2ID supporters as possible for a media photo opportunity outside the passport office(whether or not you intend to renew your passport). Participants should aim to be there at 10am, ready for the media at 10:30. Please do feel free to dress appropriately for the theme "nothing to hide". Get in touch if you want some ideas. For more details, and to let the organisers know who'll be coming, please send an e-mail to glasgow@no2id.net

15th May — Highbury NO2ID - First Meeting

Monday, 15th May 2006 6pm for a 6.30pm start at the Jorene Celeste pub on 153 Upper Street (between Angel and Highbury & Islington tube stations). Contact highbury@no2id.net for more details.

16th May - NO2ID Volunteers Meting, Central London

Tuesday, 16th May 7.00pm in the Bertrand Russell room at Conway Hall. All are welcome to NO2ID's  next volunteers' meeting. The meeting will have a theme of 'Work and ID cards', looking at issues such as Criminal Records Bureau checks and the National Identity Register. The meeting is free to attend but we will be asking for donations to help cover the cost of the room hire.

16th May - Glasgow NO2ID informal meeting

Tuesday, 16th May at 7.30pm in Mono. Everyone is very welcome to attend and we hope to see as many new faces this time as we did at the meeting two weeks ago. (If for any reason Mono is not suitable on that evening then we will instead go to Laurie's across the road). Contact glasgow@no2id.net or see http://www.no2id-scotland.net/glasgow/meeting.htm

19th May — Preston NO2ID Public Meeting

Friday, 19th May 7.30pm until around 9 pm, at 'Bitter Suite' behind Times Square pub, off Fylde Road, Preston, almost opposite the Student Union. Phil Booth, NO2ID National Coordinator will be speaking. All are welcome. Contact preston@no2id.net for more details.

20th May — UK Independence Party's North West Spring Conference

Saturday, 20th May. Phil Booth will be addressing the UK Independence Party's North West Spring Conference in Morecambe on Saturday 20th May. The two-day conference will be held in Headway Hotel, Marine Drive, East Promenade, Morecambe LA4 5AW. More details at http://ukipnw.org/events/nwspringconf.gif

20th & 21st May - Glasgow NO2ID stall at Strathclyde University "Neoliberal Scotland?" conference

Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st May, at Department of Geography & Sociology, University of Strathclyde Glasgow. Seven years after the creation of the Scottish Parliament, Strathclyde University are hosting a conference to reflect on the effect of devolution on Scottish society. (Event info http://gs.strath.ac.uk/modules.php?name=News&file=print&sid=29). Contact glasgow@no2id.net

24th May - Next meeting of North Staffs NO2ID

Wednesday, 24th May starting at 8pm at St. Luke's Church hall, Fountain St, Leek, Staffs starting at 8 for 8.30pm. [Pub opposite!] Everyone welcome. Form more details contact Laura Marcus (leek@no2id.net)

27th May - Bristol No2ID benefit gig

Saturday, 27th May at The White Bear, top of St Michael's Hill, £3. Featuring the Grumpy Man DJs, Paul Bradley from The Organelles, Mephisto's Island and Chris Beckett. For more info contact Dave Gould(bristol@no2id.net)

3rd June - NO2ID Cambridge will have a stall at Cambridge Strawberry Fair

Saturday, 3rd June. Volunteers are needed to man the stall for 2 hour shifts from 10am until 10pm: please contact cambridge@no2id.net, or text/call Andrew Watson on 07710 469624. We signed up 500 supporters in 5 hours last year - I'd like to triple that number this year. (Strawberry Fair info: http://www.strawberry-fair.org.uk)

4th July - Homeland and Border Security Conference (£695+vat)

Tuesday, 4 July at QEII Conference Centre, London, UK. a one-day event that will look at the next steps for the security community. Featuring "key figures from the IT sector, government, the police, justice, and the international community". Cost - £695+vat for private sector, £175+VAT for public sector.
See http://govnet.co.uk/security/index.php

What just happened?

North Somerset Council say no to ID cards

Almost every North Somerset councillor voted to resist Government plans to introduce the cards in the district at a meeting this week. The council voted, amongst other things, to "make it a policy of the Council to ensure that national identity cards would not be required to access Council services or benefits unless specifically called to do so by Act of Parliament". A growing number of councils around the country have now passed motions against ID cards. Following the local elections last week several councils have now changed complexion so over the next few weeks we will be looking to encourage more councils to pass similar resolutions.

NO2ID Glasgow address the Anti-Racist Alliance

On Wednesday 10th May, Geraint Bevan of Glasgow NO2ID explained some of the issues that will arise from the ID scheme if the government get their way. Copies of the presentation will soon be available from the Glasgow NO2ID website: http://www.glasgow-no2id.org.uk

IT industry and academics criticise ID card scheme

Last week(3rd May) the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee heard evidence on the government's handling of scientific advice in relation to the ID card scheme. Representatives of industry and academia said that they had not been sufficiently consulted. Professor Martyn Thomas from the UK Computing Research Committee said: "Looking at what has been done rather than what has been said would lead the man from Mars to assume that the real objective was to create a database of the nation's biometrics and that everything else was just window dressing." On the parliament-live website audio recording of the session at the end of the first evidence session, committee member and Labour MP Dr Desmond Turner can be heard saying to the committee chairman: "I'm starting to go off ID cards quite badly". Don't worry Dr Turner, most people tend to go off the government's scheme when they start to understand what it actually is.
The audio recording of the session is at www.parliamentlive.tv/Console.aspx?Encoding=4684

UKIPS announces location of new passport interrogation centres

Last week the United Kingdom Identity and Passport Service (UKIPS) announced the location of the 69 interrogation centres that will be used to interview first time passport applicants and later enrol people onto the National Identity Register(NIR). Locations include Yeovil, Norwich, Skye, Sussex and Aberystwyth. In a press release relating to the Sussex centre, the Home Office estimate that "7,425 applicants from across Sussex will be required to attend 20-minute inter-views every year". But the government's aim is to get 80% of the population's personal details, fingerprints and iris scans into the giant centralised database. Over at blairwatch.co.uk they've done some back of an envelope calculations, based on 70 interrogation centres (the originally predicted number). They reckon each centre will need to process 400 citizens per day. They conclude that "from NIR Day 1 for the next ten years you've got to keep processing people at the rate of 50 per hour at every centre, or one every 72 seconds!" The best way to avoid this chaos of course is renew your passport now as part of our renew for freedom campaign.
See http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4967276.stm and http://www.blairwatch.co.uk/node/945

UKIPS advertises brand post

This week's Media Guardian carried a job advertisement for the position of 'Brand Development Manager' at the United Kingdom Identity and Passport Service(UKIPS). Fortunately, this is not about applying hot irons to the citizenry. But the lucky appointee will be expected to "establish a brand that resonates with customers, both UK residents and the private and public sector. This role will champion the development and implementation of the agency brand and over time manage a portfolio of product and service brands." (!?)

How to tell if you have an e-Passport

Several readers have asked how to tell if their passport contains a Radio Frequency Identification(RFID) chip. The new 'ePassports' have the International Civil Aviation Organisation(ICAO) ePassport logo on the front page. Silicon.com have pictures of the new passport on their website at

Mauritian Lawyers - The ID card debate

Last Friday (5th May) about 120 people, mostly from ethnic minority communities, met in Tooting, South London for a debate on ID cards. A motion was put forward to the effect that ID cards are a good idea, which was then debated by the proposer and an opposer of the motion. Questions were raised about the impact of ID cards on ethnic minorities, in particular, people were worried that carrying them would become compulsory and that they would then be stopped and checked much more often than anyone else. On a show of hands at the end, roughly 100 people out of 120 voted against ID cards.

Contactless Mugging

If the plans to include some form of contactless chip on the UK ID card and passport actually come to fruition it could be possible for identity thieves to pinch your details simply by walking past you in the street.

The Creep becomes a rush to add features

Quite contrary to what ministers have assured parliament and the public during the legislative and propaganda process, the Home Office is planning on adding much much more information on each of us to the national identity register than the fifty items they cheerily listed in the Bill.

"ID" in the news

Fighting back on ID theft

Frank Abagnale spent his late teens and early 20s ripping off everyone he could. And how about ID cards - like the one the UK government is pushing to introduce as quickly as possible? "I give it six months before someone replicates it perfectly," he says. "Everything you need to clone an identity is in one place."

Public will "pay twice" for ID cards

The public will be forced to fork out for a costly replacement if the biometric chip in their future passport or ID card breaks down, the government has admitted.

Database State, NHS IT :Patient records may only be shared locally, say CfH

Detailed electronic patient records will not be accessible outside of the local groups of organisations that created them, in direct contradiction of the government’s vision of records available “wherever and whenever you need them”, it has emerged.

Fingerprint scanners call time on yobs in Britain's Wild West

Customers entering the town's six main late-night drinking and dancing joints were being asked to register their personal details, have their photograph taken and submit to a biometric finger scan.The InTouch scheme, the first of its kind, has created huge interest from around the world. Police forces across the UK and the Home Office, which provided funding to get it up and running, are monitoring it and if it works in Yeovil it could spread around the country.

RFID-style ID cards 'won't wear out'

RFID-style ID cards will last for 10 years without wearing out but will cost up to a third more than a standard smartcard, according to the Identity and Passport Service (UKIPS). Contactless cards would cost 15 to 30 per cent more than a standard contact-based smartcard.The procurement process for the ID cards project is expected to begin soon. UKIPS revealed that spending has reached £56m before any tenders have gone out.

Why Oyster's e-money plans hit the buffers

Plans to add electronic wallet functionality to the Oyster smartcard ticketing system have suffered a major setback. At the end of April, TfL announced that none of the shortlisted suppliers had been able to meet their criteria and the rollout had been put on hold for the time being.

Concern as school takes children's prints

A Yorkshire school is taking fingerprints from pupils – to keep a check on payments for school trips. The system, which means pupils can be instantly identified when they touch a scanner attached to one of the school computers, is expected to recoup the £2,500 cost of its installation by saving time on form-filling. If the experiment in "biometrics" works, it might be extended.

ID Card database to be used as population register

The Office of National Statistics had promoted a separate adult population register as part of the Citizen Information Project (CIP) for these functions, but the announcement states that the CIP project has been wound up and its functions incorporated into the wider use of NIR data. The announcement also changes many undertakings given to Parliament when it considered the ID Card legislation.

Database State: The UK's Electronic Prison - Part One

The UK has lapsed into a database surveillance state, an electronic prison where every aspect of the lives of its citizens is determined by the control and flow of personal information between companies and government departments.

US : New RFID travel cards could pose privacy threat

Future government-issued travel documents may feature embedded computer chips that can be read at a distance of up to 30 feet, a top Homeland Security official said Tuesday, creating what some fear would be a threat to privacy.

(Please send me any items of interest you encounter - Editor(newsletter@no2id.net) )

What you can do

You can help us by:

1. Promoting our 'renew for freedom' campaign throughout May

The ID card Act turns your passport into a one-way ticket to control of your identity by the government. If you renew your passport now you can buy ten years of freedom for £51. Encourage others to do the same and write to your local paper telling them about the renew for freedom website: http://www.renewforfreedom.org

2. Writing to your local paper

2. Getting involved with your local group
Organise leafleting, a stall or a public meeting to educate the public about the database that lies behind the proposed ID card scheme.
See http://www.no2id.net/localGroups

* We also maintain a list of things you can do on our website at http://www.no2id.net/getInvolved/other.php

Publication details: © NO2ID 2005 - This document may be freely redistributed in one-to-one communications or physical copies as long as it is reproduced in its entirety including this notice. It may not be mass-mailed without the prior permission of NO2ID.

NO2ID, Box No.412, 78 Marylebone High Street, LONDON W1U 5AP
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