Headlines: April 24th, 2002

Local government’s Improvement and Development Agency has given support to the Performance and Innovation Unit’s proposals for privacy and data sharing. Under the PIU’s proposals public bodies would share data, subject to the citizen’s continuous consent.The IDeA also supports the development of consumer authentication technologies, such as smart cards and it believes that such technologies will play an increasing role in authenticating customers of government. It gives a commitment to draw together the various smart card projects underway in local government to avoid the “wallet full of different smart cards” scenario.

The benefit of a smart card, or to use Home Officer terminology, an entitlement card, as far as local government is concerned would be that, for example, the details of all benefit entitlements relating to a housing benefit claimant would be readily accessible from the card. This would eliminate the complex cross checking processes that currently take place.