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Philippine Authorities to Pilot Biometric ID by Year’s End

Government authorities in the Philippines are proceeding in their effort to establish a national biometric ID program, with plans to begin issuance in Metro Manila and the Calabarzon region by the year’s end.

Announcing the developments in a CNN Philippines interview, Davao City Representative Karlo Nograles referred to these municipal zones as “pilot areas” for the ID program. Registration for the IDs will take place at Philippine Statistics Authority offices, and the PSA will coordinate with other agencies in the effort, potentially including the Commission on Elections, which pursued a rigorous biometric voter registration program over the last few years.

The new national IDs will contain standard biographic information such as name, blood type, place of birth, and address, as well as optional information including mobile number and email address. The IDs will also feature biometric information pertaining to ID holders, including fingerprint and iris biometrics, as well as a portrait image that can be subjected to facial recognition.

Legislation establishing the national ID program was signed by the country’s president, Rodrigo Duterte, at the start of this week. The PSA is expected to finalize its implementation procedures for the law by October, and to begin the procurement process for the ID program that month, according to a CNN report.