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Malaysian govt will implement National Biometric Registration System

Malaysia’s National Registration Department (JPN) is looking to implement a biometric registration system for all official identifying documents in an attempt to boost national security.

According to the Director-General of national registration, the documents involved in the effort will include citizenship, marriage, birth, and adoption certificates, none of which currently have any biometric identification characteristics.

Biometric elements like DNA data and facial recognition capabilities will be used to allow JPN officers to conduct investigations when there is suspicion of fraud or misuse.

The biometric elements are important. Currently, the identities of the populace depend on the fingerprint, Director-General of national registration said in a recent interview. “We will improve the existing security features, including creating facial recognition,’’ he added.

Malaysia’s efforts follow similar biometric registration programs around the world, perhaps most notably in India where the massive Aadhaar program has been gaining increasing public attention for its staggering scale.

A study on the implementation of the biometric system is to be conducted this year in cooperation with the health ministry and the Malaysian Chemistry Department, according to Director-General said.

He also stressed that new legal policies would need to be created to ensure security and privacy before the new system could be implemented.

The upgrading effort is among JPN’s efforts to ensure that civil registration records and documents are always updated and in line with the Public Safety and Security Policy.

The government is always committed to ensuring the people’s identification record’s registration system is taken care of in an orderly manner, comprehensive, systematic, accurate and up-to-date.

The official noted that he hopes the study to determine the best method and implementation of the system will be concluded before the end of the year.

Malaysian border to get biometric e-Gates

According to another article, a local IT service management company will be outfitting the Malaysian Immigration Department with 16 biometric e-gates after securing a new contract with the country’s Home Affairs Ministry.

The one-year contract is worth RM6.97 million (US$1.6 million), and went into effect on 15 February 2020.

The biometric e-gates will be placed at the border between Malaysia and Singapore and will use facial recognition technology to screen foreigners coming into the country.

The firm will provide the software and the physical equipment for all 16 gates.

The company landed the Home Affairs contract after besting 18 companies in an open tender process that took place in October 2019.

According to the terms of the contract, the firm must post an RM348,656 (roughly US$85,000) performance bond to the Ministry for a two-year period that concludes on 14 February 2022.

The news comes shortly after the firm teamed up with another local technology firm to form a new joint venture company that will focus on the development of biometric applications.

The company is already one of the leading biometric companies in Malaysia, with a portfolio that includes the Malaysian passport and the country’s MyKad national ID card.

The contract is in keeping with Malaysia’s ongoing enthusiasm for biometric border screening. AirAsia previously launched a biometric border system with facial recognition, while Malaysia Airports recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with SITA that would bring biometric passenger processing to the country’s airports.

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