The British government announced last month that it would introduce national identity cards in 2008 to counter terrorism and crime. The measure -- favored by Prime Minister Tony Blair -- proved to be very controversial, with opponents charging it was a ploy in advance of elections and a threat to privacy. The draft bill would make the cards mandatory after 2013, for such things as employment and benefits, according to a BBC Q&A.

Wayne Hanson  | 

Wayne E. Hanson served as a writer and editor with e.Republic from 1989 to 2013, having worked for several business units including Government Technology magazine, the Center for Digital Government, Governing, and Digital Communities. Hanson was a juror from 1999 to 2004 with the Stockholm Challenge and Global Junior Challenge competitions in information technology and education.