Malaysia Rolls out National Digital ID, Clarifies Biometric Enrollment Details

By Chris Burt

Malaysia has begun enrolling citizens for its National Digital ID (NDID), with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim the first to register on Friday, December 1, reports The Star.

The new digital ID is intended to compliment the physical national ID, called MyKad, and support the distribution of targeted public subsidies and a range of services from the public and private sector while protecting against online fraud. The system’s launch was kickstarted with an infusion of RM80 million (approximately US$17 million), and the selection of national applied research and development center Mimos Berhad to implement it.

The NDID program does not capture and store the fingerprints of registrants, Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil told Malaysia’s upper house of parliament, according to The Sun.

The Home Ministry and the National Registration Department holds the country’s biometric database, so while registration is carried out with the individual’s MyKad and fingerprint biometrics, as reported by the New Straits Times. The user then downloads or opens the MyDigital ID app, which was developed by Mimos, and scan a QR code to create the digital ID on their mobile device.

A white paper written by Frost & Sullivan in collaboration with NEC explains that the National Registration Department of Malaysia (Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara, or JPN), is overseeing the NDID implementation, and stores Malaysians biometrics and personal data.

The paper also notes that over 90 percent of government services are already available online, but the country has suffered huge volumes of fraud, and 1 in 8 Malaysians suspect their identity has been stolen.

Source: Biometric Update

Chris Burt is managing editor and industry analyst at Biometric Update. He has also written nonfiction about information technology, dramatic arts, sports culture, and fantasy basketball, as well as fiction about a doomed astronaut. He lives in Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter @AFakeChrisBurt.

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