U.K. delays national ID system

The planned national identity card system in the United Kingdom will be delayed two years, until 2012, according to U.K. media reports.

The original plan was for the government to roll out the National Identity Scheme, costing $9.7 billion in U.S. dollars, in 2010. But leaks to the media of government papers indicate the program is not likely to be mandatory for British citizens until after the next election.

Meanwhile, Reuters and other media outlets report that BAE Systems PLC and Accenture LLC have dropped out of the competition for the identification system contract. The system includes identity cards, collection and storage of biometric information and management of related databases.

BAE and Accenture were on a short list of potential contractors for the identification project released in October by the U.K. Identity and Passport Service.

The remaining bidders on the list are Computer Systems Corp.; Electronic Data Systems Corp.; Fujitsu Computer Systems Corp.; IBM Corp.; Steria PLC and Thales Group.

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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