Public lose faith in ID cards

The Liberal Democrats today accused Gordon brown of creating a surveillance state, as new figures show identity cards are losing popular support.

An ICM poll found 25 per cent of people now fear ID cards are a “very bad” idea, up from 17 per cent last autumn.

For the first time, a majority of respondents said they were “uncomfortable” with many aspects of the ID card scheme, as the government appears to lose its claim to popular support.

The government plans to collect personal data to be shared across Whitehall departments but 52 per cent said they were uncomfortable with the idea.

Just 12 per cent agreed it was a “very good idea” for the ID card scheme to go ahead as planned.

The Liberal Democrats said the findings suggest a growing number of people could refuse to register for an ID card.

Home affairs spokesman Chris Huhne said: “Public opinion is moving sharply away from the government’s ID card scheme the more people understand how intrusive it is, and the more they see that officials are unable to keep confidential and personal data secure.”

Later, Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg accused Mr Brown of creating a surveillance state, criticising the DNA database and “scandalous” fingerprinting of children in schools.

“Is that what you meant when you spoke so stirringly a few months ago about the great British tradition of liberty?” Mr Clegg said during prime minister’s questions.

Mr Brown insisted the government was motivated by security concerns and pointed out the Liberal Democrats support CCTV and the use of intercept evidence.