You'll need a passport to buy a mobile phone in the UK - Boing Boing. Original article in The Times

Somebody really hasn't thought this through. Will Bruce Schneier please step up and put them right.

There are 40m phones unregistered PAYG phones out there already in the UK. I look forward to all the Telcos disabling these until the owner registers. I also look forward to Tescos requiring photo ID when purchasing a new one or buying minutes at the checkout counter. And to the Telcos building the systems to capture, store and pass to the gummint, the registration. At the end of all that there will be 5M unaccounted for and another 5m where the owner faked the details and/or passed their SIM to someone else and/or their phone and SIM were stolen by some pikey scum in Camden Market.

So we have 30m law abiding citizens who are not a problem anyway and 10m false positives. Oh, yes. That will really help the War on T'rah!

I try and picture a time somewhere in the future where privacy is seen as a basic human right and the racheted-up command and control, surveillance machine has been dismantled. But short of a complete breakdown in Western society I can't see it. I also can't picture any civil political process whereby the population can force it to be dismantled. Which leaves you with some choices. Just go along with it. Play the invisible ninja game and actively subvert it. Just quietly screw it up whenever you get the chance. Wear a hoody 24/7.

It used to be that whatever happened in California was 5 years ahead of what happened on the East Coast and the UK. I guess I should be proud that the UK is leading the way and what happens here will happen in California in 5 years.

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[ 20-Oct-08 8:15am ] [ ]