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Biometric passports planned for Jamaica and Bangladesh, new eID for Fiji and Romania

Biometric passports planned for Jamaica and Bangladesh, new eID for Fiji and Romania

Fiji’s National Identification Card will be linked to electronic passports to create a new ID system that will share important details with authorities, confirmed Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, says FBC News.

The ID system will replace previous national cards and numbers, and will leverage facial biometrics and other modalities for enhanced security and improved customer service experience. Registration starts in October and the goal is to register more than 630,000 people in the first year.

“You’ll have your own card, your photograph, your address detail, biometrics of all your ten fingers, your irises and the photograph of your face, and really what will happen is that’s the only card number you should know, at the backend of it, your FNPF will be linked to that, your TIN number will be linked to that, your driver’s license will be linked to that it makes life lot easier,” he said.

Romania plans electronic IDs for release in August 2021

In August 2021, Romania will be issuing a new electronic ID card to replace the version introduced in 1997 and align with EU standards, writes Romania Insider.

The head of the Ministry of Interior’s Directorate for Population Records, Catalin Giulescu, announced in a press conference last week that Romanians would be able to use the cards to travel to other E.U. member states. Older versions will still be good for travel within the E.U. until 2031.

While previous IDs were issued when a citizen turned 14, the new cards will be issued for citizens aged 12 and over, and parents will be able to request an electronic ID for their child at birth.

Giulescu claims the project cost hasn’t been decided yet, but the average E.U. price is between EUR 15 and EUR 40, with the country trying to spend as little as possible. The new biometric IDs will be smaller than the current cards, and will include a photo and two fingerprints stored on a contactless chip.

Jamaica adopts biometric passports

Jamaica is introducing ePassports as part of the national Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) project launched by the Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) last week, writes Jamaica Observer.

This is a joint project with the Government’s National Identification System (NIDS).

Rollout will take place across the next seven months and aims to make Jamaica more digital, to develop trusted electronic identities for people, services and things, and implement strong authentication, data encryption and digital signatures, based on a certifying authority.

“Right now, PICA and e-Gov are the first movers. Coming down the line next to use the PKI infrastructure will be the Registrar General’s Department, so get ready. Their new service portal, when developed, will allow persons to apply online and print their digital birth certificates,” said Fayval William, Minister of Science, Energy and Technology.

“The significance of the national Public Key Infrastructure is that once implemented, Jamaica will have the foundation to begin using digital signatures and inscription nationally. The purpose of a digital signature is to guarantee that the individual sending the message or the document is really who he or she claims to be,” she said.

PICA Chief executive officer, Andrew Wynter, believes the project is a great milestone as biometric passports have already been implemented in 11 of the 15 Caricom countries to boost border security. Wynter says the e-passport will confirm Jamaica is aligned with international passport systems and in accordance with the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) technical requirement.

“Software certificates are shared with immigration services worldwide, enabling other countries to fully validate and authenticate our documents,” he said.

“When we travel abroad and the immigration overseas swipes our passport, there’s a one-to-one authentication system, which will allow them to confirm that this is the true identity [of the person],” Wynter added.

Bangladesh launches biometric passports and eGates

Bangladesh will introduce biometric passports and automated border control systems on January 22, Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal said in a press conference, writes The Daily Star.

The project “Introduction of Bangladesh e-Passport and Automated Border Control Management” will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre in Dhaka.

Distribution will start from the regional passport office in Uttara and Jatrabari, and divisional passport and visa office in Agargaon.

Bangladesh chose Veridos to partner with the Bangladesh Army for implementation.

The Home Ministry assures residents their biographic and biometric information will be safely stored in the chip embedded in the e-passport. To verify information, facial recognition technology will be deployed through the digital signature and will have a result in 30 seconds.

EU investigates security in Belarusian biometric passports for diplomats

The European Union is investigating the in-built security framework of Belarusian biometric passports for diplomats, according to a statement made by Croatian Internal Affairs Minister, Deputy Prime Minister Davor Bozinovic made in Brussels during the Belarus-EU visa facilitation and readmission agreement ceremony, writes Belarus News.

Belarus has shared characteristics of new diplomatic biometric passports with us recently. The ratification of the agreement hinges on a positive conclusion about their security and the degree of protection,” Bozinovic said.

Bozinovic is confident that the agreements will strengthen cooperation between Belarus and the EU. The two signed agreements to change visa procedures and readmit unauthorized individuals, which will make the visa price drop to €35 (USD$ 38).

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