31 August, 2009 — Global Research
Electronic ID cards have made alarming progress towards becoming universal, around the world. Already, over 2.2 billion people, or 33% of the world’s population, have been issued with ‘smart’ ID cards. Of those, over 900 million have biometric facial and fingerprint systems. On present plans, over 85% of the world’s population will have smart ID cards by 2012. Most of the remaining population won’t have escaped – largely, they are already enrolled in earlier generation ID systems, often in repressive states, such as Myanmar (Burma).
Understandably, campaigns against the introduction of ID cards have tended to play up the problems with ID systems, presenting them as being unworkable and creating unmanageable problems with privacy invasion, fraud, unauthorised database access, organised crime, reliability of biometric recognition, etc. As a result, a substantial number of people believe mandatory ID cards ‘just won’t happen’.
It’s long past time to stop burying our heads in the sand. There are no obstacles to the worldwide introduction of mandatory, electronic ID cards
All those problems with ID systems may be real, but they are not enough to stop implementation, primarily because these are problems that will affect people as individuals, not their governments – our problem, not theirs.
There has been hardly any meaningful debate about one of the biggest issues of our time. Most ordinary people don’t like the idea, but project goes ahead anyway.
It’s also time to look at what ID systems are really intended to do, not the public justification. Since governments probably always knew that ID cards wouldn’t stop terrorism, organised crime, ID theft, fraud, etc., there has to be some other reason for their introduction – and it appears to be a reason that governments don‘t want to own up to, in public.