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MoU expands biometric capture venues for PhilSys program

Local govts ordered to accept cards for transactions
MoU expands biometric capture venues for PhilSys program

The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) has concluded a deal with SM Prime Holdings Inc. to open up biometric capture sites in the company’s business malls for the second phase of the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) program.

According to the Philippine News Agency (PNA), the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will see SM malls nationwide used for the Step 2 registration which involves the capture of biometrics such as iris and fingerprint scans well as front-facing photographs.

“This partnership will help PSA’s goal to expand PhilSys operations and register more Filipinos across the country,” the PNA quoted the PSA as saying in a statement.

This MoU comes as the PSA says it is scaling up the PhilSys process with at least 12 million people having already completed the Step 2 registration, and with about 500,000 PhilID cards already delivered to those who have completed the process.

Local governments told to accept PhilIDs

In the meantime, local government units have been called upon to accept the national biometric ID cards (PhilIDs) as the only valid proof of ID for public and private transactions, the PNA said in a different report.

“In a memorandum, DILG ordered local government units to accept PhilID as official proof of identity for public and private transactions. According to BSP, banks should accept PhilID as a unique proof of identity of Filipinos who want to open bank accounts,” the PSA said in a Facebook post citing the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

The Philippine Identification System Act imposes a fine of PHP500,000 (just over US$10,000) on those who refuse to accept the ID for public transactions, and without any valid reason for going so, the PSA recalled.

The PSA has also sealed a deal with Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to ensure that those who complete the Step 2 biometric registration to be able to easily open bank accounts. The move is intended to increase access for those who are yet unbanked.

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