Hi-tech smart ID cards to slam door on fraud, theft
BUSINESS establishments and financial institutions would have to dig into their pockets when the government rolls out the new smart identity card over the next two years.
The more sophisticated the machines needed, the more money business would spend, Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said in Pretoria yesterday.
These card-scanning mobile devises range from R30 to over R100.
The mobile devise would assist businesses or banks in authenticating information or verifying whether someone is the rightful owner of the card. This would ultimately slam the door on identity theft and fraud, said Dlamini-Zuma.
The department spent R5-million for the pilot phase. Dlamini-Zuma said this would ensure that the card goes through a "seamless process" of checks before the official recall of the old ID books in the next six months.
She said the launch of the smart card meant no paperwork, no mistakes and no more waiting. "We will try to be as accurate as possible because no one will be filling in a form."
New applicants would get their smart cards for free, while those who lose them would pay R140, as is currently the case with the green bar-coded ID book.
Work was also under way to ensure that officials are trained in preparation for the transition.
"No one will lose their job. We will train people [and] re-skill them to do other jobs and ensure that they have more sophisticated skills to look after the machines," said Dlamini-Zuma.
She was confident that the security features on the card would make it hard for anyone, even rogue officials, to jeopardise the process.
While the card would have a photo, name of the owner, date of birth etc, it also contains some safety features like a micro chip that can store information which can be used by law enforcement authorities, including invincible fingerprints of the owner which can only be seen by making use of a specialised devise. - firstname.lastname@example.org