UK ID card fuss is only temporary

Keynote RSA Conference 2008
Keynote RSA Conference 2008

That was the warning from security guru and BT chief security office Bruce Schneier who said that in five years or so, people won’t have to worry about ID cards anymore.

Not because libertarians will triumph and prevent the technology from being developed, but because ID checks will happen in the background without us even realising.

“I know there are debates on ID cards everywhere but in a lot of ways,they are only very temporary. They are only a temporary solution till biometrics takes over,” he said, speaking at the RSA Conference Europe on Tuesday.

“When you walk into the airport they will know who you are. You won’t have to show an ID – why bother? They can process you quicker,” he said.

I am not quite convinced about Schneier’s time-frame as look at how long its taken to get a plastic card with a photo on it approved so how long are we really looking at for sophisticated biometrics technology and the databases in the background to make it all work.

Still while biometrics for high-level uses in airports and law-enforcement might be a longer way off – more low-level uses by commercial organisations might be rolled out a lot sooner.

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