Aug 062010
 August 6, 2010  Posted by  Non-U.S., Surveillance, Youth & Schools

Matilda Battersby writes:

ContactPoint, a £224 million government database containing records of all UK children, will be switched off at noon today.

One of the boldest moves made so far by the new Coalition Government in its first 100 days of power, the decision to scrap Labour’s ambitious child protection initiative is being greeted with a mixture of applause and despair.

While advocates, and the government, claim the costly IT scheme is redundant and badly maintained by social services, the real issue to promote its disbandment is data protection. And with the names, ages and addresses of 11 million under-18s – not to mention those of their parents and doctors -, available to hundreds of thousands of teachers, police officers and social workers at the click of a button, you can hardly blame them.

But, however important this “data protection” issue, scrapping the database without presenting an immediate alternative – or even plans for an eventual solution–, clearly puts demands for privacy protection before child protection.

Read more in The Independent.

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