UK bill would make ID cards mandatory

The U.K. government’s plan for a national ID card survivedanother legislative round on Monday, with House of Commonslawmakers amending the bill to make an ID card mandatory whenpeople apply for a new passport.

Monday’s amendment was welcomed by the government, which haspushed for a mandatory ID card to cut down on long-standingproblems of public benefits and banking fraud. A further law willhave to be passed to make the mandatory measure stick, however.

Another amendment passed Monday requires new passport applicantsto be entered in the national ID card register. Members ofParliament debated whether the two systems — one for biometricpassports and the other for national ID cards, which could alsocontain biometric data — should coexist given the similarinformation that will be stored in both.

Lawmakers also passed an amendment requiring a report every sixmonths on the cost of the ID card plan, striking down a previouschange in the House of Lords that would have required only aninitial report on its costs.

The government had said the annual operating costs for issuingID cards and passports would be

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