Identity Cards Get Personal

HM Treasury has just published Sir James Crosby’s report on Challenges and opportunities in identity assurance. It’s a document that all security professionals should read, not only because it’s a hot topic, but because it’s not often that we get to hear the views of a former top banker on a major public policy issue.

The report considers both public and private sector uses of identity. It rightly emphasises that “every aspect of an ID card scheme should be designed from the consumer’s perspective”. And it sets out some good principles regarding trust, ownership, informed consent and the need for quick repair of compromised accounts.

The report favours a more rapid roll-out. It even recommends that enrolment and tokens should be provided free of charge to encourage citizen buy-in and quick uptake. I’m sure the Treasury loves that one!