Nadra converts ID cards into digital wallets – Pakistan
LAHORE: The National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) is working to make digital wallets of national ID cards computerized as part of the government’s vision Digital Pakistan and an update of an already existing application will likely be available later this year.
“Translating this vision into reality, we have launched the ‘Pak Identity’ mobile application as a key element of digital identification to facilitate applications for national identity cards through an online portal. The application allows to capture biometric fingerprints, facial recognition and scan documents needed to process a person’s ID card using smartphones, without visiting a Nadra office or embassy Nadra chief Tariq Malik said in an exclusive interview with Dawn.
“In a short time, 75,000 overseas Pakistanis processed their national identity cards [called Nicop] from the comfort of their homes using the app, which is supported by two-factor authentication,” he explained. The app is available on Android and iOS platforms.
Users will be able to take advantage of in-app installation later this year
Mr. Malik said that with the launch of this app, Pakistan has become the first country to implement “contactless biometric” acquisition and verification using smartphone cameras. “With successful tests on 75,000 Pakistanis abroad, Nadra will opt for a digital wallet,” he said.
Explaining the features of the digital wallet, the president of Nadra said that it will be a unique digital identifier. “This innovation will revolutionize the national ID ecosystem in Pakistan by ensuring convenience for the public, and is a leap forward in ending conventional physical ID,” he said.
“The digital dividends of such technological innovation will yield positive results in contactless banking, financial inclusion, ease of doing business and e-governance initiatives by offering remote identification and e- KYC (electronic knowledge of your customer),” he added.
Nadra has registered 120 million adults (96% of the total population aged over 18) to date, with Balochistan making up 83% of registrations, compared to more than 96% in other provinces.
“Nadra will open centers in the remaining 20 of the country’s 517 tehsils by June,” he said, adding that the authority would also launch 96 mobile vans, bringing their number to 356 nationwide.
On the thorny issue of the use of Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) in future elections and Nadra’s role in verifying the data, the authority’s chairman said: “EVM or no EVM, the polls will have to be hold via data from Nadra. However, the authority has no role in the operation of the machine. This is the domain of the Electoral Commission,” he said.
Posted in Dawn, January 31, 2022