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From The Socialist newspaper, 25 March 2009

Keeping (illegal) tabs on us

ALMOST A quarter of the British government's databases violate human rights or data privacy laws and should be closed down, according to the Joseph Rowntree Reform Trust.

It says that eleven out of 46 major government databases break laws intended to protect the personal details of UK citizens.

The government uses databases to store DNA profiles for around four million people (see feature on democratic rights), biographical details of all children, hospital records and details of benefits payments. This is before the introduction of a national identity register, which will store biographical information, biometric data and administrative data linked to the use of an ID card.

The trust estimates that more than 16 billion pounds is spent each year on information technology projects, but it says the government has a dreadful record on handling public data. For example, in 2007 tax officials lost two discs loaded with sensitive data - including banking records - on nearly half the population. Not surprisingly, over two-thirds of the population no longer trust the government with their personal data.

Over 100 billion in spending on IT is planned for the next five years, but the government cannot provide an accurate figure for cost of this 'Transformational Government' programme. Only about 30% of government IT projects actually succeed. However, this programme was supposed to make public services better or cheaper.

Simon Carter

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In The Socialist 25 March 2009:

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March for jobs!

Map of Youth March for Jobs route


Socialist Party editorial

Tide of job losses must be fought


Socialist Party election campaign

Rail union launches euro election challenge

An appeal from Bob Crow

No2EU Financial Appeal pdf

NO2EU Supporter appeal pdf


Socialist Party campaigns

Students need a mass fighting organisation

Credit crunch hits home

Campaign for a new workers' party

MPs - an honourable profession!

Fast News


Socialist Party feature

The uncaring care sector

Pay for your own vetting


Socialist Party marxist analysis

State repression in Britain

Keeping (illegal) tabs on us


International socialist news and analysis

France: Three million take to the streets in national strike

Canada: "Fighting back makes a difference"

Mass demo in New York against budget cuts

Scotland: International Socialists conference a big step forward

Dundee Prisme occupation: Workers remain defiant

Stop the slaughter of Tamils: London campaign meeting


Socialist Party workplace news

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Unison Four to face further hearings

Wales: United battle needed to stop college cuts

Fighting for justice for cleaners!

PCS Land Registry jobs and pay campaign

Workplace news in brief


 

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Related links:

Democratic rights:

triangleWorkers' protests against state repression in China and Hong Kong

triangleOutrageous sentence for TUSC agent in 'misleading electors' court case

triangleMay's silence is a green light for Chinese repression

triangleStop repression in Hong Kong and China

triangleMovement challenges Iranian regime

Hospital:

triangle1,400 beds empty as patients lay in corridors: health unions must act now

triangleUnions condemn 'culture of bullying' at Merseyside hospital

triangleHands Off HRI campaign granted judicial review

triangleHands Off HRI campaign group meets Corbyn and Ashworth

Children:

triangleChild poverty to hit 5m by 2021 - strikes can stop the cuts

triangleSave Free School Meals!

triangleFor Whom the School Bell Tolls: Our kids or the Tories?

Benefits:

triangleProfits up Wages down

triangleMajority of kids poor in some areas

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