August 2, 2013 -
Children in Pakistan could soon carry biometric identity cards, according to the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA).
The administration says the new non-mandatory cards are being issued following the successful launch of Smart National Identity Cards to the adult population in Pakistan last year. The smart identity card has a number of embedded security features and also includes biometric data of the card holder.
In March, Nadra was pushing to issue smart cards to the unregistered population ahead of elections in the country and at that point, the authority had registered 99% of the population in Islamabad, 95% in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, 96% in Punjab, 90% in Gilgit-Baltistan, 88% in Sindh, 87% in FATA and 76% in Balochistan.
According to a report from the Associated Press of Pakistan, only children over the age of 15 will submit biometric details and at the age of 18, cards will need to be upgraded.
Children and biometrics are a tenuous combination at best, and many recent objectives combining the two have been hotly contested, though there have been some successful applications. BiometricUpdate.com has looked at the success and failure of some of these programs, through the lens of school cafeterias. Read the full feature here.