back to article convinces just 2,000 Mancunians to join ID card trial

The government's ID card pilot scheme in Manchester has failed to capture the North West's imagination with just 2,000 volunteers coming forward to date. Manchester, with a population of just under half a million, has been picked for the first public rollout of the scheme. Ministers apparently believe that its comparatively …


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  1. Deckchair

    is required

    I'd have signed up.

    If I'd heard about it.

  2. Richard 81

    Expect to see

    Expect to see more sweet, soothing, read horribly manipulative propaganda, like that darling climate change one doing the rounds at the moment. Perhaps it will involve a wide-eyed child being told a bedtime story about a plain full of puppies or a train station in kitten town, that get blown to pieces because the gown-ups didn't all go out an get ID cards.

    If you need me, I'll be in the angry dome.

  3. sandman
    Thumb Down


    I'm not entirely surprised (trying for understatement) that the people of Manchester aren't that keen, turkeys voting for Christmas comes to mind. I wonder how many out of that 2000 only volunteered so they could get early examples and find out how to forge/clone them with an eye to future crime?

  4. John A Thomson

    Dump it already

    Come on.... it is time to dump this scheme already!

    At least the Tories will get rid of this monstrosity when they get into government next year!

  5. Thecowking

    Greater Manchester is somewhat larger than Manchester

    While the City of Manchester does only have about 470000 people, the scheme is for the county of Greater Manchester, which has about 2.5 million people.

    So if 2000 people wanted it, that's still less than 0.0001% penetration.

    I'm not one of the 2000. Pedantry because, well I was being pedantic.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Worrying. How does one find 2,000 folk volunteering to have their fingerprints taken and filed; like a criminal ? Or maybe they were 2,000 who knew the police already had them anyway?

  7. sandman

    @ Dump it already

    Don't worry, I'm sure the Tories will think of something equally objectionable...

  8. Anonymous Coward


    Wasn't this supposed to cost something like £5bn? £5bn/10,000 = £500,000 each. Money well spent, well done, keep up the good work.

  9. Frederick Karno
    Big Brother

    well i'll go to the foot of our stairs

    Would be interesting to see a breakdown of who has signed up freely...... and their jobs, that figure is so low .

    I am going to assume its a few greater manchester councillors and people at the tax office.

    on the bright side they arent getting over run and need more staff.


  10. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    2000 ID cards or 2000 people?

    If you need an ID card keep your job, why get only one?

  11. PerfDave

    Protest Against the Scheme

    This weekend, NO2ID held a big public meeting and set of street stalls around Manchester city centre. Read more at or watch the video at

    Incidentally, it's misleading to call this a trial - it's just the first phase of a national rollout. Lord Brett made that clear at

  12. kevin biswas
    Big Brother

    Maybe...Just Maybe...

    The 2000 who signed up were bogus applicants wanting to get a 'gold-standard' fake new identity. Lets hope so :-)

  13. Steve Anderson
    Big Brother

    Don't forget...

    ... ID cards are only a small part of the problem, the main problem being the huge, all-encompassing state database that works alongside. Beware of political parties promising to scrap the ID cards without promising to scrap the database as well.

  14. Anonymous Coward

    Darn it

    So you mean to tell me that if I want one of these marvellous Identity Cards then I've got to up sticks and move to Manchester? In which case I've gone off of the ID card idea completely....

  15. Secretgeek
    Big Brother

    Softly, softly, catchee public.

    'If the government made a real effort to let the populace know that the scheme was coming down the pipe, it's just possible that even more people would decide it was an issue worth flexing their electoral vote on.'

    Too true. I'm sure the gov are more thah happy to just let ID cards drip their way into the consciousness of the population in order that they don't wake the sleeping bear that is anyone with a drop of common sense.

    Turn around in 10 years time and people will be wondering why you don't have one.

    I'm not convinced that any change of government will halt this. After all it's the security services (a misnomer if ever i heard one) and the police that instigated this and who votes them out?

  16. Eponymous Cowherd
    Big Brother

    I'm surprised.....

    that 2000 people are *that* retarded.

  17. Guy Herbert


    @ AC: 10:49 GMT

    "Worrying. How does one find 2,000 folk volunteering to have their fingerprints taken and filed; like a criminal ? Or maybe they were 2,000 who knew the police already had them anyway?"

    - MIsunderstands the process, as the IPS wants you to do. These are NOT volunteers to be fingerprinted, let alone to be recorded on the National Identity Register for life, which would be the consequence if they were actually to apply.

    They are people who for one reason or another have filled their contact details in here:

    There's no reason to suppose that at the time of doing so they knew anything much about the scheme. Nor is there any reason to suppose many of them will apply when they receive the forms. They are sales-leads, no more. And fairly weak ones at that. They have not even signed up to a statement that says: "I want an ID card, please tell me when I can apply."

    At a minimum £232 pounds each for sales leads in Manchester (more in fact, since the other 8,000 show some would have registered anyway) perhaps we taxpayers should be grateful the IPS marketing campaign has yet to take off.

  18. druck Silver badge

    Re: I'm surprised.....

    Under a Conservative government those 2000 people would be given access to the mental health facilities they clearly require. And there will be no difficulty finding them, given the amount of personal information they have forever sacrificed.

  19. iMess

    @ Steve Anderson

    Huge database? Well, that's better than having a police database, a separate medical one, a separate council one, a bank's one, a DVLA one, etc.

    I vote ID cards purely because this is a chance to have all my stuff in 1 place. Everyone moans about security.. well is it any more secure now? Didn't think so.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If the passport was £18 would you buy?

    The passport used to be £18 before NuLabour came to power, now it's £77, with FastTrack/Urgent now charged for at an extra £35.

    It seems to me they priced up the passport through the room to make the ID card an affordable passport that people think will be usable in the EU.

  21. Andy ORourke

    @ iMess

    "I vote ID cards purely because this is a chance to have all my stuff in 1 place. Everyone moans about security.. well is it any more secure now? Didn't think so."

    Oh dear, all your stuff in one place. You really think this will replace the driving licence, NHS records, criminal records (not that I am suggesting you have one), nope, this wil just be ANOTHER massive database to go along with all the other databases. It wont be any more secure, it wont stop civil servants walking off on Friday afternoon with a pen drive full of stuff to be lost on the train journey home. It wont replace your passport.

    It is a big waste of money!

  22. Anonymous Coward

    iMess you are a fuckwit!!!

    >>> Huge database? Well, that's better than having a police database, a separate medical one, a separate council one, a bank's one, a DVLA one, etc.

    Is it fuck. You don't have one key which opens every lock in your house, car and office. do you?

    Now suppose our Home Office overlords could build and operate this uber database. Yes, this is of course utter fantasy... What happens when they lose your details or leave them on a train? Besides, if these databases are compartmentalised, the damage from loss of access is limited. If the bank's systems go down, you wouldn't get cash out an ATM. But that wouldn't stop you entering the country. Or getting medical treatment.

  23. David 66


    You are scaring the children!

  24. Boring Bob

    @ Thecowking

    "While the City of Manchester does only have about 470000 people, the scheme is for the county of Greater Manchester, which has about 2.5 million people.

    So if 2000 people wanted it, that's still less than 0.0001% penetration."

    Hmm, seems like we where having a little siesta while the maths teacher was explaining percentages at school.

    2000 / 2,500,000 = 0.0008 = 0.08% (Clue: percent means "per hundred")

  25. marvin28

    Less secure

    Imess, those databases will continue to be separate. The NIR will give you a unique citizen number and that field will be added to those databases.

    This makes your data less secure.

  26. edwardecl
    Thumb Down

    are you serious?

    You do realise you have to play for these ID cards don't you... they are not free and are more expensive than a passport.

    If you want one then fine... but for #### sake don't force us all to have one.

  27. Dave 129


    And you seriously trust the Government to be able to manage and maintain perhaps the biggest database of its type ever attempted? On their track record? And not have serious security breaches or incorrect details on your record?

    I am speechless... you are either a government lacky that's bought their crap hook line and sinker, or you really don't get what the database means and what little comeback you will get once on it.

  28. Crazy Goat Man Al

    Re Thecowking

    Actuall its 0.08% so considerably greater than 0.0001% but good point well made

  29. David 105
    Paris Hilton

    @0.0001% penetration

    There's a joke there just waiting to be made.

    Paris because, oh you get the picture

  30. MinionZero
    Big Brother

    The more I see the more angry I'm getting at these two faced Machiavellian control freaks...

    I was watching an old film at the weekend. It was only made in 1993 and it described a surveillance state as, "This fascist crap makes me want to puke". Oh how views have changed since the 1990s era of such freedom and liberty ... but it hasn't changed and that's the point. Its still fascist crap, its just the close minded, arrogant, machiavellian, control freak, Narcissistic politicians who refuse to see it as bad. They are doing everything they can to placate and distract the masses from seeing these ID cards as so wrong. That's why they are bring ID cards in slowly now, as they know if they bring them in fast, there would be millions angry and it would seriously risk massive protests against the cards. So time for them to to use divide and conquer, so only small groups can stand against them. Each new group that gets the cards, they know will allow for only a few quite protests which the media will hardly see and take notice of and even then if there were big protests the politicians PR people have got so good at distracting the media away from protests that most people won't get to hear about it. Thats why any protest needs to bypass conventional media channels like news papers, they are now to easy to distract away from covering protests in detail.

    “machiavellian : being or acting in accordance with the principles of government analyzed in Machiavelli's The Prince (written 1513), in which political expediency is placed above morality and the use of craft and deceit to maintain the authority and carry out the policies of a ruler is described.” ... yet nearly 500 years after this work was written, we have these same kind of deceitful Narcissistic, cunning ruthless control freaks in power, trying to clamp down on us and control us and its getting ever worse.

    These bloody ID cards are just part of the growing police state and it sickens me that they are using divide and conquer tactics, so the solution to this is why we need a centralized means to protest against them, to unify people against the control freaks. What we need is for a specially created web site or blog to act as a centralized record of videos showing people destroying their ID cards in interesting ways. (In effect a Video petition idea). Get people to compete for interesting ways to destroy their cards. The more people who publicly destroy their cards, the more other people who will also stand up and follow suit. Plus use emails to spread the word to many people and sites like twitter to spread the protests, bypass traditional media like newspapers. This growing Police State is not the England I grew up in. This Fascist crap has got to be opposed and stopped.

  31. kevin biswas

    0.0001% penetration ?

    We iz so f*ct.........

  32. david bates


    At least if you have lots of bits of details on lots of smaller databases they're going to have to have lots of goes at losing/selling/deleting it before everything about you is in the public domain.

    Lucky old you - with being on your one big database you can rest assured that the whole thing will have been downloaded onto a big new pendrive and left on a train before the bits have dried...

  33. Thecowking

    Buggrit millenium hand and shrimp

    I actually "corrected" it to 0.0001 because I thought that 0.1 was wrong when I first wrote it.

    Ah well, my point was that Manchester is much smaller than Greater Manchester, my maths might be dire, but hey such is life.

    Beer to calm my seething embarrassment.

  34. Captain Mainwaring

    World's most expensive novelty ID Card?

    If that young David Cameron does take over at number 10 next year and scraps ID cards, will those ID cards that have been issued become null and void or still have legal tender as an ID document? If they do indeed become an ineligable document, it may possibly go down in history as the world's most expensive novelty ID card that has ever been made.

    Still, all may not be lost as their rarity value in future years may make them valuable collector's pieces commanding, who knows, perhaps many times their original purchase price. Although I have been an outspoken critic of National ID cards for many years, I think I might at long last, be beginnig to see one possible reason to actually own one!

  35. seanj


    You're one of those people who has just one password for everything and doesn't see what's so insecure about it, aren't you?

  36. seanj
    Thumb Up


    "I was watching an old film at the weekend. It was only made in 1993 and it described a surveillance state as, "This fascist crap makes me want to puke"."

    Demolition Man!

    Watched it myself a few weekends ago.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What's the point of an ID card?

    Lets get this straight...

    We have:

    1. Birth certificates

    2. Passports

    3. Drivers licenses + registration plates

    4. A periodic census

    5. Postcodes

    6. National Insurance numbers

    What exactly possessed labour to believe a national ID scheme - yet another form of ID - would thwart would-be criminals and terrorists?

    The only logical thing I can conclude from this thought process is scary.

    Imagine a scenario in the not-too-distant-future - you get stopped by police and asked for your national ID and can't produce it... by this stage, a national ID is required by law. It's now also law that you have to produce it on request, if not, it's a trip down the station for you. Think that's a crazy idea? Turn to your history books folks, it's happened before!

    On a slightly less scary note, police could quickly check online to see if you've been issued an ID card and retrieve all your details right there and then, just as they can from your license plate.

    The difference here is that your just walking along minding your own business.

    Fortunately, public sentiment is soundly in the camp of common sense and this ID scheme is more than likely to be dropped when labour get the boot.

  38. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    2000 mancs voluteering

    That'll be the recent releasees from Strangways then.

  39. John G Imrie

    just 10,000 people across the whole UK express an interest in the cards.

    Well, I've expressed an interest in the cards. I've very interested in never having one. Does that make me one of the 10,000

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    So, assuming the government actually succeeds and manages to get down to a single database. As soon as a fraudster gets hold of your identity and gets themselves an ID card issued on it, you will have no way to reclaim your identity. You won't be able to say, here is my driving license, or passport, or birth certificate, or some utility bills, because all of them will disagree with the uber database.

  41. David 45

    I'll have one

    Over my dead body

  42. Charles Smith

    It would solve my problem - not

    Hopefully the National Id Card would solve a little identity problem facing me. I've been a customer with the Nat West Bank for 40 years. They won't give me an on-line account unless I go to a Branch with my passport to prove who am I.

    Ironically it was my Nat West Bank Manager who signed my UK passport application photo's 15 years ago.

    Maybe I should have one of those National Id Cards to prove who I am, if I can get the bank to certify ....

  43. Anonymous Coward

    You're all wrong...

    Those that think the giant database can never be finished are all wrong. Any fool knows that databases with 10000 records have been around for years.

    The job's as good as done.

  44. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Soo, how many Labour supporters are there in Manchester?

  45. Jack the Ripper
    Thumb Down


    At least having different data on different databases makes it more difficult for a security breach for a complete picture of your life to be built up. I know that the Civil Service and Government are incompetent but it is not as easy to put together all the information if there are multiple databases.

    This is hammered home by the publication today on Wikileaks of the BNP member database, where name, address, dob telephone numbers and in some cases membership type (student, unemployed, working or retired) were listed. Now put all of that in a database together with every other piece of information that the Government has on you and if you aren't afraid you either need to get back in touch with reality or stop working for the Home Office.

  46. Chris Hunt

    An offer

    So they "haven't really marketed the scheme yet", but they've spent nearly half a million quid not marketing it.

    In the spirit of cost cutting in the public sector, I'm offering to not market the scheme for £200,000.

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