Email from First Direct:
Thank you for your recent request to join first direct.
Full details about a first direct e-ISA, along with an application form containing the information you have provided, are now on their way to you.
SAVE PAPER – THINK BEFORE YOU PRINT!
This is after filling in some 4 page online form. Really need to take their own advice.
By contrast IceSave manage to do the whole application process online, for a savings account. I am pretty sure if I complain to First Direct about this they will say something about security and money laundering laws. IceSave took driving licence and passport numbers for that.
Update: Despite me calling them three times, First Direct never managed to send me the correct forms to transfer my existing ISA, so around the end of May 2007 I stopped bothering to contact them and opened an ISA account with Yorkshire Building Society instead.