The Ministry of Justice has confirmed it is considering spending cuts that could possibly affect IT systems. This follows a report in the Times of discussions on emergency action to fill a £1.3bn funding gap. It said that officials have identified a series of "quick wins" to recoup big savings that include the axing of computer …
Here's an idea
Scrap the £3.9bil you're spending on these aircraft carriers and fix the gap AND TWICE AGAIN.
How about just sacking the
consultancy companies but keeping the IT staff on?
Save hundreds if you ask me.
Just so I understand the government...
They can give 38bn to the banks who have screwed up through incompetance, but can't give 1.3bn to it's own department in order to prevent direct, and indirect job losses, and to invest in public services. This stuff about protecting the frontline staff is nonsense, the frontline staff can't work effectively without the backline support systems - and they are going to be hit by these cuts.
Big Savings on the horizon, cap'n!
Dear 'Ministry of Justice' . Get your fiends in the Home Office to abandon ID-cards. That''ll save you a few billion.
[For providing this wonderfully swift and efficaceous consultancy-mediated solution I hereby expect to be paid 5% of the savings. If Jacqui Smith is reading this she can contact me offline for details of the Swiss bank-account into which she should transfer my payment]
£1.3 billion cut or £12 billion spend?
Let me try to get this straight. the Department of Justice has a £1.3 billion shortfall, so cuts are planned.
"The Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) [which] legislates for using methods of surveillance and information gathering to help the prevention of crime, including terrorism" went through the UK parliament about a decade ago. (http://security.homeoffice.gov.uk/ripa/about-ripa/)
Between 1999 and 2001 approximately £20 million had been given to major ISPs in order that they could set up facilities to store traffic data. Between 2004 and 2008 £19 million was paid to ISPs to collect the data. (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/08/06/data_retention_grant_spending/)
Two years ago the Information Commissioner warned that, "Mistakes can also easily be made with serious consequences - false matches and other cases of mistaken identity, inaccurate facts or inferences, suspicions taken as reality, and breaches of security." (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/11/02/surveillance_warning/)
In February 2008, Bill Thomson at the BBC reported on the Information Commissioner's concern at the ease with which almost 800 government departments could access traffic data, mentioning that a quarter of a million requests had been fulfilled in the first nine months of the system's operation in 2007. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/low/technology/7226016.stm)
In August 2008, Chris Williams headlined, "UK.gov to spend hundreds of millions on snooping silo." Lord West had pointed out that this was "to maintain the UK's lawful intercept and communications data capabilities in the changing communications environment." (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/08/19/ukgov_uber_database/)
Then, all of a sudden, the projected funding of the snoop initiative jumped to £12 billion. (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/10/09/home_office_defends_communications_retention/)
And Ms Smith has justified this, saying, inter alia, "We have to arrest early rather than late to protect the public. Sometimes we arrest when we have intelligence, but not evidence." Er, what? "We then have to work across different jurisdictions in different countries, unearthing the evidence we need. ... experts, people who actually do this work, have explained clearly to me that this process inevitably takes time." (http://ukinusa.fco.gov.uk/en/newsroom/?view=Speech&id=7576189)
Oh noes, echoes of John Major's 'back to basics' common sense notions about family values are beginning to seem like revolutionary policy initiatives. Where's my duvet...