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Within next five years there won’t be any ID cards in Abudhabi

Third generation integrated biometric data for ID cards will be launched by the UAE in the next four to five years, a top official said on Wednesday.
This means, people will not be asked to carry their ID cards, the official told the Federal National Council.

“The 3rd generation integrated biometric data for ID cards, to be launched by the UAE within the next four to five years, will use iris prints and facial prints along with fingerprints for identification verification,” Dr Saeed Abdullah Bin Mutlaq Al Gafli, Director General of the Emirates Identity Authority, told the House as he was answering a question from Salem Ali Al Shehi, a member from Ras Al Khaimah.

Dr Al Gafli added that in five years’ time people will not be asked to carry their ID cards as the new technology will allow identity verification without the ID card.

The Emirates Identity Authority endeavours to upgrade systems to meet requirements of the UAE’s fourth generation of the government excellence system — the first of its kind across the globe that focuses on results and was designed to develop government performance.

Dr Al Gafli said a new target has been set for the government by 2018 to allow 80 per cent of those who use government services to access them via mobile devices as the Emirates Identity Authority works to achieve the full potential of the ID card at both the individual and institutional levels through the innovative ID card reader software and the ID card data reader via mobile phones and tablets software via the Near Field Communication (NFC) technique.

The innovative ID card reader software is an innovation based on a range of integrated software that deal with the ID card in several languages and that are compatible with various types of smart card reader devices. It enables government and private entities to deal with the ID card and read the contents of its smart chip easily based on smart platforms.

“The software also enables all service providers to deal with the ID card via smart devices and on all platforms [Apple, Android, BlackBerry, Windows] so that the various entities can take advantage of the Emirates ID Authority’s digital ratification gate services to support their ability to provide their smart e-services via various smart phones by using the ID card in accordance with the highest standards of security and credibility in dealing with individuals and identifying them through cyberspace,” Dr Al Gafli said.

The technology is made available for Abu Dhabi Police, etisalat and du, according to Dr Al Gafli.

The ID card data reader software, through the Near Field Communication (NFC) technique, allows reading the ID card’s smart chip data using mobile phones or tablets of all types without having to use a traditional card reader device, as the ID card can be recognised by the device used at only 4 cm from the back of the device and the data stored on the electronic chip will then be read and uploaded to the entity’s system or the software used by the concerned entity or person.

This software provides the institutions and entities of different areas an advanced and easy way to obtain the personal data needed to complete their customers transactions within seconds, which contribute to save time and effort required for data entry and transaction completion and to avoid errors that occur during data entry by traditional means.


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