The only ID you will ever need? What to know about the National ID System

Dharel Placido, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 08 2018 08:03 PM

MANILA - Malacañang on Wednesday released a full copy of the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) Act which aims to establish a single national identification system for citizens and resident aliens of the Philippines.

Here are some information on what to expect about the new law.

WHAT IS PHILSYS?

The PhilSys mandates the government to produce a valid proof of identity for all citizens and resident aliens.

It aims to eliminate other forms of identification when transacting with the government and the private sector.

“PhilSys is very simple. It will only answer who are you and are you who really say you are?” said National Statistician Lisa Bersales.

The Philippine Statistics Authority, the lead implementing agency of the law, said the “Phil ID” can be used in lieu of 33 IDs.

HOW CAN I OBTAIN A PHIL ID?

The PSA said one year after the law’s effectivity, citizens and resident aliens may apply for a Phil ID at any registration centers.

An applicant will only need to bring a birth certificate in registering for a Phil ID. Those who do not have birth certificates will be processed in a special lane.

Resident aliens must provide proof of his or her residence in the Philippines.

These are the following registration centers, according to the law:

1.    PSA Regional and Provincial Offices
2.    Local Civil Registry Offices
3.    Government Service Insurance System
4.    Social Security System
5.    PhilHealth
6.    Home Development Mutual Fund
7.    Commission on Elections
8.    Philippine Postal Corporation 
9.    Other government agencies and GOCCs as may be assigned by the PSA

The government aims to finish distributing the Phil IDs in 4 years, prioritizing the beneficiaries of the conditional and unconditional cash transfer programs.

IS THE PHIL ID FREE OF CHARGE?

The initial application and issuance as well as the renewal of the Phil ID for citizens shall be free of charge.

A standard fee shall be collected by the issuing agency from resident aliens and on the re-issuance of a replacement card.

WHAT INFORMATION WILL THE PHILSYS CONTAIN?

The PhilSys Registry Data shall contain the following information, 3 of which may be supplied optionally. These are:

a. Demographic data

1.    Full name
2.    Sex
3.    Date of birth
4.    Place of birth
5.    Blood Type
6.    Address
7.    Whether the person is a Filipino citizen or resident alien
8.    Marital status (optional)
9.    Mobile number (optional)
10.    E-mail address (optional)

b. Biometrics information

1.    Front-facing photograph
2.    Full set of fingerprints
3.    Iris scan
4.    If necessary, other identifiable features of an individual as may be determined by the implementing rules and regulations of the law

CAN FILIPINOS LIVING ABROAD ALSO AVAIL OF PHIL ID?

Yes. the PSA said the the Department of Foreign Affairs shall be in charge of providing Phil IDs to Filipinos abroad.

WHERE CAN I USE THE PHIL ID

The PhilID can be used and honored in all transactions requiring proof of a citizen or resident alien’s identity, such as, but not limited to:

1.    Application for eligibility and access to social welfare and benefits granted by the government
2.    Application for services and benefits offered by the GSIS, SSS, PhilHealth, HDMF, and other government agencies
3.    Applications for passports and driver’s license
4.    Tax-related transactions
5.    Registration and voting identification purposes
6.    Admission to any government hospital, health center or similar institution
7.    All other government transactions
8.    Application for admission in schools, colleges, learning institutions and universities, whether public or private
9.    Application for employment purposes
10.    Opening of bank accounts and other transactions with banks and other financial institutions
11.    Verification of cardholder’s criminal records and clearances
12.    Such other transactions, uses or purposes, as may be defined in the IRR

DOES THE PHIL ID HAVE AN EXPIRATION DATE?

None. But National Statistician Grace Bersales said a person will have to be given a new Phil ID upon reaching the age of 5, when a person enters school. Bersales said this will have to be done for purposes of registering a person’s biometric information.

A newborn baby will already be given a Phil ID and automatically assigned a PhilSys Number. Details for their entry to the PhilSys will be spelled out in the IRR.

Upon reaching the age of majority, which the IRR will determine, a person will also need to apply again for a new Phil ID. Bersales said another capturing of biometrics data will take place at this point.

SHALL I BE CONCERNED ABOUT MY PRIVACY WITH THE PHIL ID?

National Statistician Grace Bersales said refusing to obtain a Phil ID is not punishable under the law, but one will have a hard time doing government transactions without one.

She also assured that a person’s data shall be protected by the government, as the law penalizes anyone who shall be involved in the “malicious disclosure of data or information by officials, employees or agents who have the custody or responsibility of maintaining the PhilSys.”

The law also states that a court order is needed before law enforcement agencies can have access to a person’s PhilSys data. And upon disclosure of the data to law enforcement agencies, the owner of the information shall be notified within 72 hours.

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