FB pixel

Israeli government’s call for mandatory biometric ID system met with backlash


Israeli interior minister Aryeh Deri has called for all Israeli citizens to obtain a mandatory biometric identity card, with their personal information stored on a national digital database, according to a report by The Times of Israel.

As detailed in a memorandum, in the next two weeks citizens will be permitted to comment on the new ID system.

Following this period, the bill will go to a ministerial committee, and if approved, it will be put to a vote in the Knesset.

“The biometric database is crucial to prevent identity theft of Israeli citizens, and it is protected and secured at the highest level,” Deri said.

The biometric card will store the cardholder’s data — their personal information, fingerprints, photo and facial profile — on an embedded chip, with all information also stored in a secured database.

The database is designed to prevent identity theft and to ensure that terrorists are unable to pose as an Israeli and gain access to areas of high population to execute attacks.

The biometric card and database were initially proposed in 2009 by then-interior minister Meir Sheetrit.

The system was approved on the condition of conducting a two-year pilot phase, which began in 2013 but was eventually extended.

In June 2015, a petition signed by 74 academics at Israel’s universities voiced concerns that the database could be a “security threat” that’s susceptible to hacking and data leakage.

They pleaded with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the Knesset to cancel the plan “before Israeli citizens and the country’s security are badly damaged.”

The Movement for Digital Rights are currently petitioning the High Court against the move, stating that “this a program that has been rejected by all other countries,” according to a report by Hamodia.

“The project is opposed by many officials, including 74 top Israeli data security experts and the director of the National Council Against Cyber Terror,” Movement for Digital Rights said in the statement. “All of the personal details of Israelis will now be subject to data leaks, despite the efforts by the Interior Ministry that the database will be safe from hackers. The fact is that 70 percent of Israelis have refused to participate in the test program that has been ongoing for the past three years.”

The biometric cards are already available at local Interior Ministry offices throughout Israel, with approximately 1.2 million citizens having already volunteered for the program.

Previously reported, the Israeli government said last month that its experimental biometric database will be deleted if the legislation procedures aren’t completed by June 30, 2017.

Article Topics

 |   |   |   |   |   | 

Latest Biometrics News


Mastercard commits to passkeys for payment, full tokenization in EU by 2030

As the EU gallops into the digital wallet era, Mastercard is going full-token, as it announces a plan to achieve…


Michigan City Council orders comprehensive facial recognition policy for local police

In a move aimed at safeguarding civil liberties, the City Council of Ann Arbor in Michigan has taken a decisive…


Video deepfake fraud threat is real, helplessness is not: ID R&D webinar

Deepfakes have become a cause for common concern, with articles and viral posts warning of their power to deceive. Real-life…


Mobile driver’s licenses continue to pick up speed

Mobile driver’s licenses (mDLs) are among the final pieces of a fully-realized digital wallet ecosystem that would see us permanently…


Sumsub expands data sources to improve KYB

Sumsub has provided upgrades to its Business Verification platform aimed at tackling the common challenges that businesses encounter during the…


DHS reinterprets foreign worker fees to fund biometric border system

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has proposed a way to fund its Biometric Entry-Exit program by changing the fee…


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Most Read This Week

Featured Company

Biometrics Insight, Opinion

Digital ID In-Depth

Biometrics White Papers

Biometrics Events