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Andy Burnham: Since January 2004, the Identity Cards Programme has received one representation in support of the ID Cards Scheme, in which the correspondent's address identifies them as residing within the constituency of Windsor.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the Government have undertaken research to test the biometric technology to be used in the proposed identity card scheme; and if he will make a statement. 
The specific biometric technology to be used in the identity card scheme will not be finalised until a competitive tendering process is complete. This process cannot commence before the Identity Cards Bill receives Royal Assent. Thus, it is not possible to undertake research to test this technology at this point in time.
13 Feb 2006 : Column 1725W
However, extensive testing of the technology is planned both during and after the procurement process and market sounding activities have been taking place with potential suppliers in accordance with Office of Government Commerce best practice and in co-operation with Intellect, the UK trade association for the hi-tech industry. Additionally, extensive work has been undertaken in the process of setting relevant requirements around biometrics in advance of the procurement process. A dedicated experienced team are working on this area, who review all latest scientific research in the field and co-operate with experts.
This involves working with leading biometric experts from the US National Institute for Standards and Technology, San Jose University, UK National Physical Laboratory and the Communications-Electronic Security Group among others, who have conducted a significant amount of reputable research into the performance of biometrics.
This work is also informed by the experiences of other biometric schemes both within the UK and outside, such as US Visit and biometric cards schemes in the Philippines and Hong Kong. The findings of this work to date is that biometrics are suitable for use in large scale operations such as the proposed identity cards scheme. Finally, this work is subject to significant oversight by the government's Biometrics Assurance Group, chaired by the Government's Chief Scientific Adviser, Sir David King, and the Home Office Senior Biometric Adviser.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether the possibility of incorporating Police National Computer numbers into the National Identity Register is under consideration; and if he will make a statement. 
Andy Burnham: The possibility of incorporating the Police National Computer number into the National Identity Register is not under consideration. At Commons Report stage of the Identity Cards Bill, the Government amended the Bill so that, under Clause 1(6), any number allocated to a person for identification purposes which would reveal personal sensitive data (within the meaning of the Data Protection Act 1998 (c.29)) or whose disclosure would tend to reveal such data was not a registrable fact. This was introduced as a safeguard as it rules out explicitly the possibility of the Police National Computer being recorded on the National Identity Register.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether (a) planning work and (b) cost estimates have been undertaken regarding the assessment of applications for exemptions when the Identity Card Scheme becomes compulsory; and if he will make a statement. 
Andy Burnham: Detailed planning and cost estimates have not been undertaken in respect of assessments of applications for exemptions. These issues will be considered closer to the time when there is a definitive proposal to implement compulsory registration.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much he estimates it will cost an individual to obtain a replacement identity card if it is (a) stolen, (b) lost and (c) damaged. 
Andy Burnham: No final decisions have been taken regarding the cost of replacement identity cards if an individual's card is lost, stolen or damaged. Any fee charged in these circumstances will require the approval of Parliament.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 6 February 2006, Official Report, column 946W on identity cards, if he will publish the security risk assessment reports that have been produced. 
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 8 November 2005, Official Report, column 344W, on identity cards, what the results were of his Department's further analysis of the estimates for the benefits which are defined as not yet qualified completely in paragraph 25 of the Regulatory Impact Assessment of the identity card scheme of 25 May 2005; and whether that analysis is complete. 
Andy Burnham: The identity cards programme is continuing to identify and quantify benefits alongside detailed benefits realisation planning for those benefits which have already been identified. The analysis is ongoing and the results are fed into the business case at major review points.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to his written statement of 2 February 2006, Official Report, columns 2931WS, on identity fraud, what his Department's definition of identity fraud is; and whether it is the same as the definition given by the Cabinet Office in its 2002 report. 
Andy Burnham [holding answer 9 February 2006]: The Home Office Identity Fraud Steering Committee (IFSC), a collaboration between UK financial bodies, government and the police to combat the threat of identity theft, has developed a high-level set of identity crime definitions.
4. Identity Fraud occurs when a False Identity or someone else's identity details are used to support unlawful activity, or when someone avoids obligation/liability by falsely claiming that he/she was the victim of Identity Fraud.
Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the number of imams admitted to the UK since 2000 as ministers of religion who are no longer working as practising imams. 
Mr. McNulty: Anyone granted entry to the UK as a Minister of Religion is admitted on the basis that they will work full time as a Minister of Religion. The first grant of leave is usually for a period of 12 months. Those who apply for further leave to remain or settlement must show that they fully meet the requirements of these Rules.
David T.C. Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many files have been lost by the Immigration and Nationality Directorate in each of the past five years; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Charles Clarke: The information is not available in the format requested. The Immigration and Nationality Directorate's IT System File Tracking indicates that at present there are 15,994 files unaccounted for, wholly or in part, representing 0.2 per cent. of a total file holding of approximately 6.5 million. A range of measures including additional training and targeted exercises to locate files and update records is currently being pursued to reduce this number.
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