Alarm expressed over security of UK children’’s database

January 27th, 2009 - 1:52 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Jan.27 (ANI): Parents, security experts and opposition parties have voiced alarm that 400,000 people are to be given access to a new national database containing details of all 11 million children living in England.
According to a report in The Times, ContactPoint, which has so far cost the national exchequer 224 million pounds, will hold the name, address, date of birth, parents” details, GP and name of school of all English children aged under 18.
Any child receiving help with special educational needs, who has been in contact with social workers or seen a youth worker, will also have a special entry against their name.
But the admission from Government that so many different individuals would have access to such sensitive data has sparked renewed panic that the information would not be safe.
Yesterday ministers made an official estimate that 390,000 people in all would be able to use the system. The number includes local authority officials, charity workers, youth workers and careers advisers.
They defended the decision to let so many people see the database, saying that all those who worked with children needed access if it was to work. All users would have an ID, a password, a random digital code or access token and a PIN.
Margaret Morrissey, of the campaign group Parents Outloud, which represents thousands of families, said that many parents had no faith in the ability of government to keep information on its databases secure.
David Laws, the Liberal Democrat children’’s spokesman, said: This intrusive and expensive project needs to be scrapped. The fact that the roll-out has already been delayed because of technical issues does not bode well. (ANI)

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