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    • Hi all           I spoke to the courts earlier today and they advised me that the points placed on my licence were removed in October 2019, and that a court date is set for November 26th. Guess what ??? I had not been given that info either. The courts were very helpful and explained to me that everything had been sent to my previous address (which I have not lived in or owned for 5 years) The car in question was registered in March 2016 and I have owned since new and has never been registered to my old address. I have proof of this down to the point of not taxing the car March 2017 as the car was zero tax I did not realise I still had to go online and tax it, the summons for that was sent to my current home address.  it is very strange that the police directed everything to my previous address. i then contacted the police on the number given by the courts and was told to forward proof I was out of country at time of offence for them to look at, the police officer was very understanding and quite helpful giving the information. I have to e mail her tomorrow and will give an update when I know more as this previous address thing is really confusing !!!  
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jasta11

Electronic Signing - you don't need to use it.

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Excellent FOI question asking about electronic signing pads and an equally informative reply from the DWP FOI Team. Download it and use it when you're asked to sign electronically.

 

My only concern about signing electronically is worrying whether it has actually triggered the payment successfully - I'd still prefer to have the clerk put my money through while I'm sat there to see it.

 

Question and response can be found here:

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/requirement_to_give_biometric_si#comment-59764

 

Basically, we do not have to use the electronic signing pad; they can only 'encourage' us. No sanction can be applied for refusal to use it. You can bet that the advisers will not mention this to you.

 

Interesting to note that not only does the pad record your signature, it also measures the angle of the pen, pressure of the writing and speed too. Big Brother knows no limitations, does it.

 

Another request was for all signing pad guidance issued to advisers, that can be found here:)

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/electronic_signing_pad_guidance

 

Had a quick read through - most interesting. If your signatures don't match after 3 tries for any reason, they're going to want to know why AND expect you to provide more ID like driving licence etc. Also there is NO mention of electronic signing not being compulsory (did we really expect there would be!). Even the sample letter they give telling you all about it makes no mention that it's optional.

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Everyone needs to refuse to use this system at all and only use the normal paper and pen signing.

 

Signed on today myself and the electronic signing came up,

I had a FOI request printed out stating its not mandatory

 

I would prefer to sign on normally with pen and paper,

Even got a manager over to speak to me.

 

I quoted to him I was concerned over security

and if my signature could be copied off the system and put onto another document that I haven't agreed to,

 

 

he quoted " this is the government they would never do anything like that" ,

I really really wanted to laugh but held it in.

 

I even quoted the A4E fraud to him, he wasn't too happy at that and tried to pass it off.

 

Best bit was after signing the genuinely nice lady I was signing with actually told me that the electronic pads have lost people jobs,

People have been taking early redundancy since they came in.

 

If enough people don't use the system then it could at least save some jobs

and yet show another waste of money the gov have spent on crap without

thinking it through rather than penny pinching.

 

George

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Totally agree George.

 

As this pad can apparently tell so much about us when we sign, could they not use the biometric info as a 'lie detector'? For example, if your signature for some innocent reason doesn't match up to the ones they have on record they could claim you've turned up drunk/full of drugs, or that you're in an 'agitated and abusive' mood. Sounds far-fetched but I honestly wouldn't put anything past them in their attempts to gain sanctions.

 

I see absolutely no need for any kind of 'digital signature', nor can I see how it could 'reduce costs and paper'. You sign a small sheet each time you sign on and the clerk puts the payment through - takes seconds. If they want digital copies of the signing sheets then any OCR scanner will do it.

 

As you say, who knows what they'd do with our signatures in digital form? If A4e had used digital signatures it would have been hard to prove they were forgeries because, in a sense, they wouldn't be!

 

The system costs for these pads are over £7 million, not for the pads themselves but for the cost of integrating them into the IT system and creating the new software. £7 million quid for a system we have the option not to use. Laughable, if it wasn't so tragic.

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" this is the government they would never do anything like that"

[...]

I even quoted the A4E fraud to him, he wasn't too happy at that and tried to pass it off.

 

This would be the same government that has had MPs jailed over fraudulent expenses claims and regularly lie to the electorate and their own committees...


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More FOI replies confirming that electronic signing is not mandatory. Make sure you scroll all the way down to see the main body of documents.

 

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/is_electronic_signing_using_the

 

'FOI Request 465 Response' document contains the following;

The legislation in place to support the use of Electronic Signing is part of wider legislative changes that allows the capture of signatures by electronic methods. This is contained within the Social Security (Electronic Communications) Order 2011 and can be accessed at http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2011/1498/contents/made

Article 3(2) of this Order amends the Jobseekers Allowance Regulations to allow the capture of signatures electronically. It enables the Department to use alternative methods to pen and paper to capture signatures from Claimants wherever it is required in its business. It does not, however, make the use of electronic signatures compulsory as a condition of receiving benefit and was never intended to do so.

 

There are some carefully worded paragraphs in the other documents that give the impression that it's mandatory, but never at any time actually says it is - bless their deceiving little cotton socks:) Extracts from 'Signature Capture Service - Lines to Take and Questions and Answers' document;

 

Q9. What if I don’t want to sign electronically, I prefer to sign on paper?

With the introduction of SCS, electronic signatures will become DWP’s standard method of recording a signature. Signature Capture Service is a more secure way to sign and will greatly reduce the possibility of a payment being missed, if you receive one. We will retain the facility to obtain clerical signatures if required but this will be used in exceptional circumstances only.

 

There's no 'exceptions'; you either agree to sign electronically or you don't.

 

Q22. I know someone who is signing electronically why aren’t I?

The change will happen across all Jobcentres from October 2014. Once the change happens in the Jobcentre you attend we will let you know when we would like you to provide an electronic signature.

 

..note the use of 'we would like', rather than 'you have to'.

 

Q23. I know someone who doesn’t give electronic signatures, so why am I?

The change is happening across all Jobcentres from October 2014. Once the change happens in all Jobcentres everyone will be asked to provide an electronic signature.

 

Again, note the use of 'asked'...not 'mandated'.

 

Have a read through all the documents, well worth it.

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Was given a letter last week explaining I had to go to local JCP to record my signature as they were introducing digital signing, I mentioned I had read somewhere it was not mandatory and they told me that

 

" if I did not use the digital signing I would not get my money, they are a line manager and if it was not compulsory they would know"

 

Again I said I have read that it is not a mandatory condition so they asked me to provide proof, all this time other members of staff were listening in on the conversation, I nipped around the corner to my local Ingeus and printed off the FOI request and took it straight back.

 

The other staff who had listened in on our earlier conversation seemed surprised to see me again so I made sure that they were aware of the document I printed off before gracefully handing it to the manager stating this was a response from the DWP and in fact I was correct, it is not a mandatory requirement.

 

 

The only worry I have is exercising my rights could make me out to be a target but I have stated I want to use the traditional method and see how it goes next week.

 

While I am at it I will be asking to be dropped from the fortnightly drop and go system that they dumped on me without telling me I have a choice, I would rather continue with the weekly signing.

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Using signatures is really stupid full stop. Mine is different every time I do it, no matter how hard I try. People are able to practice enough to forge others signatures (people have made millions from illegal autographing).

 

Worst of all, it's hardly checked. I've signed "Not Authorised" on numerous occasions and no one has picked up on it.

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The other staff who had listened in on our earlier conversation seemed surprised to see me again so I made sure that they were aware of the document I printed off before gracefully handing it to the manager stating this was a response from the DWP and in fact I was correct, it is not a mandatory requirement.
:thumb:

 

Managers do not like to be reminded when they are wrong (I've upset enough in my time). You may well find your card has been marked as a "trouble maker", so make sure you record all further interactions just in case they try to set you up for a fall.


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Using signatures is really stupid full stop. Mine is different every time I do it, no matter how hard I try. People are able to practice enough to forge others signatures (people have made millions from illegal autographing).

 

Worst of all, it's hardly checked. I've signed "Not Authorised" on numerous occasions and no one has picked up on it.

It is not just a signature, it also records hand pressure amongst other things to build a biometric fingerprint.

 

I think this digital fingerprint will eventually be used to verify our identity to access all government services.

 

My concern is twofold, if you suffer some kind of trauma which alters your digital fingerprint then it could cause problems proving your identity, at the moment I have never been challenged as to the authenticity of my signature, like you, it changes regularly, so I can see being challenged would become a regular occurrence and cause problems for me that just was not there with the regular paper signature

 

If someone manages to create a copy of my digital fingerprint then unlike a password I cannot change it, then someone with malicious intent and a way to exploit / bypass this security can cause a lot of damage once all services are on-line.

 

And how difficult could it be to appeal against anything if such a thing did occur, if the exploit was what they call zero day, as in no one else is aware of the exploit.

 

Obviously there will be multiple layers of security in place but imo biometric fingerprinting is not a necessary component and solutions exist that do not include this.

 

As an aside, it roughly cost 7.5 million to buy the devices and 1 Million to install, they reckon they will save 1 million per year due to the changes, but if people refuse to use the digital signatures it could turn out to cost more than they anticipated.

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I also have my doubts about exactly what else they will be doing with out digital signatures - despite their assurances that strict data control checks will be in place. The disadvantage of having everything in electronic form is that if a data breach does occur, everyone will be at risk. I too believe this is all part of some bigger nefarious plan.

 

Just yesterday I emailed Richard Coxton, Press Officer of the PCS Union to see if they have any plans to publicly announce that electronic signing is not mandatory and more importantly, if they iintend to issue a memo to Jobcentre staff telling them that they must inform customers of their option not to use it.

 

As we all know, in 2013 the PCS had to issue a stern memo to Jobcentre staff telling them not to try and access customers UJ accounts and I can see this going the same way again with electronic signing. We all know for a fact that advisers will either not know about it being optional or, more likely, fail to inform people in their usual 'lying by omission' practice.

 

We need publicity on this matter..and lots of it. I also asked that my email be sent to any other relevant PCS officers who dealt with the Jobcentres. I'll keep you posted on any replies I get.

 

I don't think exercising your rights will make you any more of a target - as I bluntly told one adviser 'You have far more rules to follow than I do and I can trip you up on guidance errors far easily than you can ever trip me up on my simple Claimant Commitment'. It's just a shame we need to treat every visit to the Jobcentre as a 'combat zone'.

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Yes I would be very interested to read the reply, what confuses me is why they leave it open as such and why it is not set out as a condition, does it require legislation to make it mandatory or could they simply change the wording at any time as an amendment, if it does require a change in law to make it mandatory then I wonder what the actual reason is for not taking that route as I would presume they would be eager to get everyone to sign up.

 

Anyone notice how IDS vanished during the run up to the election, and know he is back in the news again,they have a clear mandate from people to finish what they started and although those who have experienced first hand how cruel, ruthless and psychological tactics employed by the DWP can be, according to ONS 73% of adults agree with the benefit measures, so it is a huge battle to win hearts and minds of general populace and I cannot see any light at the end of tunnel.

 

Maybe a Job seekers union funded through donations might give a voice loud enough to make changes but who is going to fund a scheme which helps the work shy and lazy continue living a life of luxury (says sarcastically) .

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[...] does it require legislation to make it mandatory or could they simply change the wording at any time as an amendment

 

It could be made mandatory by way of a Statutory Instrument without too much difficulty. However, allowances would still have to be made for the few that sign on by post or for what ever reason, can not physically sign.

 

* for a while, I had an adverse reaction to some prescribed drugs that affected my ability to hold a pen. This "digital signing" could have caused me some serious problems.

 

As for that odious little IDS - Once he starts cutting child benefits and working tax credits, his days will be numbered.


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Still no response from the PCS Press Officer so I forwarded my initial letter to their Leeds head office..back came a string of 'I am out of the office till XXX' and even a 'I have now left the PCS' replies. I wonder if anyone actually goes in to work at all??? One responder promises to return to work tomorrow so we'll see if he deigns to reply.

 

When I signed today I mentioned the fact that FOI responses indicated that electronic signing was optional and would they be telling the claimants this? Cue panic and the clerk rushing off to consult her superviser. Upon returning, the clerk said that if customers didn't want to sign electronically they'd be allowed to use pen and paper but from her initial manner I'm 100% sure she either had no idea it was optional OR she knew perfectly well but thought I didn't.

 

I'll be sending the FOI responses to the JC Manager and asking for a written statement that A) he and all staff are fully aware that electronic signing is optional and B) that staff will point this out to customers immediately, not waiting for anyone to object. Will be a very useful letter to have.

 

The clerk tried the old 'we can't give out our email addresses to send it to' routine - even though I already have the work email addresses for at least two of them :). I had the distinct impression she just wanted the whole thing - and me - to go away.

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Just to update, I'm still waiting for a response from the PCS. Apparently Charles Law, Industrial Officer has my email and hopefully will be getting back to me. From what I've read of him online he seems very pro-active against the shenanigans of the DWP.

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Interesting subject....although the Signature Capture System linked to the Digital Signing Pad does not record a signature as such, it simply builds up a Signature Profile of those signatures which a Civil Servant deems acceptable at the time the candidate accepts enrollment on the system.

 

I suspect that, before 100% of candidates agree to be enrolled, the Job Centre will simply ditch the technology given the increased time that Civil Servants have to spend in dealing with rejected signatures from valid candidates offering a valid signature.

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Interesting subject....although the Signature Capture System linked to the Digital Signing Pad does not record a signature as such, it simply builds up a Signature Profile of those signatures which a Civil Servant deems acceptable at the time the candidate accepts enrollment on the system.

 

I suspect that, before 100% of candidates agree to be enrolled, the Job Centre will simply ditch the technology given the increased time that Civil Servants have to spend in dealing with rejected signatures from valid candidates offering a valid signature.

 

Mine gave up after twice the electronic pen didnt follow my hand in what i wrote as it was way behind me as i did my signature


TJR JNR

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Just had an email reply by Charles Law, Industrial Officer of the PCS. I won't print it in full as technically it's a personal email between him and myself but I'll give the gist of it - it's very disappointing. In a nutshell, the PCS don't want to know.

 

Basically he says the PCS will not be issuing any statements regarding the fact that electronic signing is not mandatory and he goes on to praise the use of the system, saying it will improve the payment process and make sure error is reduced.

 

I will quote this line from his response though though..'Electronic signing does not, we believe, bring with it the same kind of concerns that PCS has had with other new technology developments like Universal Jobmatch and is therefore not an issue that we are campaigning about.'

 

He appreciates that customers don't have to use the new system but they 'run the risk of their payment being unnecessarily delayed'. Strange thing to say as the clerk will just do the attendance/payment release process manually as usual - I always make sure they do it while I'm there.

 

He's missed - or deliberately avoided - the entire point of my initial email; I was not concerned about the advantages/disadvantages of electronic signing, I was concerned about the fact that customers have not been told that it's optional and the JC staff will undoubtedly mislead - and lie - to customers to make them think it's compulsory.

 

I'm disappointed that the PCS thought it was worth issuing a memo to DWP staff when they were threatening customers to gain access to their UJ accounts yet have no interest when the DWP start threatening customers to gain their biometric data. I'd have said both issues were the same, wouldn't you?

 

So it's up to us to spread the word and make sure people know they have a choice as to whether to use the system. We'll get no help from the JC or the PCS it seems.

 

*Update* I've also sent a nice letter to the ICO - who deal with Data Protection issues - asking what happens if JC staff deliberately mislead people into giving up their biometric data. I'd have thought this was a definite violation of the Data Protection Act 1998 as the data concerned can only be taken with prior full and free consent of the individual. Let's see what the response is - if any.

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My email to the ICO was returned today 'Unable to deliver'..so I've re-sent it (and will keep doing so as it's the correct email address.) I noted that ICO's telephone helplines are down too at the moment. Good job I'm not cynical - I'd think they were trying to avoid me :)

 

Signed on today and was given the letter telling me to bring my ID in next time as I'd be expected to use the electronic signing pad. No mention of it being optional, naturally. When I queried the clerk she honestly had no idea it was optional and I believed her as I've dealt with her before. JC manager was in a meeting so I spoke to one of the Performance Team Managers on the matter and he said he knew that use of the pads was optional, so I politely suggested he made the 'lower ranks' aware of it too, then I wouldn't have to report anyone in 2 weeks time for trying to mandate me to use it. He said he'd inform the staff straight away and also put a note on my claim so I wouldn't be pestered. Seemed a decent enough guy and my mentioning that I'd contacted the PCS and ICO over potential data protection issues seemed to be taken on board seriously.

 

So hopefully all staff in my office at least will now know that use of the pads isn't mandatory. However, we all know they still won't tell the customer this. Everyone seems to be ducking the 'why don't you TELL people it's optional?' question. Never mind, small victories are better than no victories.

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So hopefully all staff in my office at least will now know that use of the pads isn't mandatory. However, we all know they still won't tell the customer this. Everyone seems to be ducking the 'why don't you TELL people it's optional?' question. Never mind, small victories are better than no victories.

 

I'm surprised they haven't got you flagged as a trouble-maker by now, or perhaps there is already a cryptic marker on your file already. :!:

 

Disappointed by the response from the PCS union. One would have thought that if claimants were going to raise complaints about mandation of optional methods, the union would want to protect their members from any repercussions.


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I was given my appointment to set up signing on digitally but unfortunately I forgot to bring my ID so they had to resort to signing me on in the traditional method, interestingly enough they allowed me to sign on without any proof of ID yet they refused to allow me to digitally sign without it, and at the end of the day they only require something with my signature on it but my digital signature will just be a cross in the hope I wont have difficulty replicating it in the future what a joke this has all become,

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I'm surprised they haven't got you flagged as a trouble-maker by now, or perhaps there is already a cryptic marker on your file already. :!:

 

..yes, I'll definitely be wanting to see the advisers 'comments' box on my claim next time I sign. Sad sign of the times when you're branded a troublemaker simply for wanting your rights, isn't it?

 

Disappointed by the response from the PCS union. One would have thought that if claimants were going to raise complaints about mandation of optional methods, the union would want to protect their members from any repercussions.

 

I was most disappointed and surprised - I thought they'd have leapt on it in the same way they tackled the Universal Jobmatch access problem. Reading up on the Data Protection act the key phrase is 'given with full and informed consent'.. and people certainly haven't been 'informed' about it being optional to use the pads. I hope the ICO will come back with something worthwhile and not just ignore things the way PCS did.

 

..but my digital signature will just be a cross in the hope I wont have difficulty replicating it in the future what a joke this has all become,

 

Isn't it just! They seem very positive the system is foolproof, hack proof and won't be used for anything underhand. I do not share their confidence.

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Just received an acknowledgement email from ICO that they've received my enquiry. They're supposed to reply to enquiries - and that's all it is at this stage - within 14 days so their reply should arrive nicely in time for when I sign on next. Let's hope they actually answer the question I posed and don't duck it.

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Yesterday when I signed the "Adviser" on my first attempt told me that my signature matched my signature by 0% and to try again. On my second attempt he also told me that my signature matched my signature by 0% and this was not good enough. Then he asked me to confirm my name and personal details. At this point I explained that whenever I sign my signature it is slightly different but it is still recognisable as my signature. He would have none of it explaining that the device knows better than me what my signature is [this guy is a robot btw - no individual thought]. He was in a hurry though and then let me sign on paper where there were 3 previous signatures of mine. I asked him does that look like my signature ? He replied - Yes. What a moron!!.

 

I have printed out the DWP statement stating it is not mandatory and next time I will refuse to use the device as it cant tell what my signature is ! [FFS]

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Similar thing happened to me when i signed on today.First attempt matched my signature by 69%. I had to do it again.The staff in my local jobcentre are already fed up with it and apparently earlier in the week they couldn't get people to sign electronically as it wasn't working.

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I just put a simple cross and it took 6 attempts before it was accepted, on my final try my adviser said "if it doesn't work this time just forget it" so he clearly had some frustrating experiences with the system already.

 

My biggest fear of the drop and go system was somebody at some point in the day would go through the forms, any problems with job search evidence in theory we would receive either a phone call / txt / email so it was an anxious wait, does any one know now I am signing on digitally would that also mean payment is released when the pad is signed rather than me having to wait for someone to check the evidence at a later time ?

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