Highly respected Bruce Schneier started his career in understanding the mathematics of encryption to protect computer systems and data. Understanding this is just one element in the field of security as he went on to explore the relationship between humans and computers and what influences would affect even the security expert.
Having written several famous books e.g. Secrets & Lies and Beyond Fear, Bruce today as founder and CTO of BT Counterpane is clearly an interested party in making sure the business world does not suffer in relationship to Banking or even to Terrorism.
These credential in the field of security stand out as he lays bare the problem of having an Identity Card, as he makes clear “ these cards will make identity theft easier “ resulting in a much “nastier crime” with a “ lot more damage being done to you” than just using the conventional methods of protection of data through encryption.
In explaining at what is at the bottom of the problem Bruce explains that the two deciding factors that make ID Cards useless, lies first in the fact that identity information is easily obtained and secondly that it becomes valuable once obtained.
As a solution to Identity Theft, Bruce explains that the answer lies within making personal information harder to get and to use. For instance in the US it is easy to get a credit card on the most basic of personal information about a person, whereas in Europe this information is not the deciding factor.
Truncating his argument is very much the suggestion that many Myths have to be dispelled especially in regard to the provision of Security through the ID Card and the debate around the idea that this will also protect Privacy, which he puts down as a complete load of nonsense.
Here Bruce asks you to think of security measures that work and as an example he puts forward a Door Lock and a Wall. Of these two methods that have now been implemented in the protection of planes from high-jacking it is the cockpit door that has been reinforced and passengers that have been convinced to fight back that provide security. Each security solution here has nothing to do with privacy or identity.
The ID Card thus as a means of Security is flawed to such an extent that its use of identity as the Wall/Door is compromised instantly, whereas identity should be seen to be behind the Wall/Door hidden and protected from being faked. If there is any conclusion to be made, the certainty of any implementation of ID Cards and failure in any part will devastate hundreds of thousands of lives, just as a Door left wide open that will allow an artic to roll through it destroying every bit of your Life & Personal Finances.