Philippine Identification System (PhilSys): What you need to know
You might have probably heard the news that the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) has revealed the launch of the online portal for the country’s national ID registration. Let’s learn more about it and go through everything you need to know.
To recall, in August 2018, President Duterte officially signed Republic Act No. 11055 or the Philippine Identification System Act. Its goal is to establish a single national identification system referred to as the “Philippine Identification System” or “PhilSys.”
According to the Philippine Identification System Act, the PSA is mandated to produce and issue the PhilIDs to all registered Filipino Citizens and registered aliens; hence, it needs to engage the services of a recognized government printer (RGP) to provide the printing services that meet the general card design and its security requirements and the target volume of cards for the entire project.
The PhilSys is the government’s central identification platform for all citizens and resident aliens of the Philippines. An individual’s record in the PhilSys is considered as an official and sufficient proof of identity.
The PhilSys will contain the following key components:
• PhilSys Number (PSN) – a randomly generated, unique, and permanent identification number assigned to an individual upon birth or registration by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). It will be the standard number for the individual across all agencies of the government.
• PhilSys Registry – This contains the PSN, registered records, and information of all persons registered in the PhilSys. The PSA, as a repository and custodian of all data, shall create and maintain this registry.
• Phil ID – it is a nontransferable card that shall preferably be issued to all citizens or resident aliens registered under the PhilSys subject to the guidelines to be issued by the PSA.
The PhilID is a valid proof of identity that can be used to transact with the government and private sector. As mentioned, it is identified as a non-transferable card issued upon successful registration to the PhilSys.
According to the PhilSys Act Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR), the PhilID shall be the physical medium issued to convey essential information about the person’s identity containing on its face his/her PSN, full name, sex, birthdate, birthplace, blood type, address, marital status (if declared), and a front-facing photograph.
The PhilID shall have a QR Code, which contains at least the PSN and any two fingerprint information. Additionally, the PhilID shall also include other security features as safeguards for data privacy and security and prevention against the proliferation of fraudulent or falsified information.
The PhilID of Filipinos has no expiration date, whereas the PhilID issued to resident aliens is only valid for one (1) year.
The PhilID is free of charge for the initial issuance for Filipinos. However, the fee shall only apply for the replacement of the PhilID due to damage or loss. Plus, holders of Certificate of Indigency are exempted from the said fee as long as they present their certificate.
The PhilSys will provide valid proof of identity for all citizens and resident aliens as a means of simplifying public and private transactions. It also targets to eliminate the need to present other forms of identification when transacting with the government and the private sector, as well as to reduce corruption, strengthen financial inclusion, and promote ease of doing business.
As per the PSA, the national ID or PhilID is not just another ID to add to your list of “valid IDs.” Besides providing valid proof of identity, the PhilSys is dubbed as a platform to transform and streamline how services are delivered. The purpose is to create a single Philippine Identification System for all citizens and resident aliens of the Republic of the Philippines, which would enable easier accessibility and application for eligibility to social welfare programs and benefits from the government.
The PhilID will allow its holders to apply for eligibility and services and access to:
• Social welfare and benefits granted by the government
• Passports, driver’s license
• Tax-related transactions
• Admission in schools/government hospitals
• Opening of bank accounts
• Registration and voting purposes
• Transactions for employment purposes
• Cardholder’s criminal records and clearances
However, the PSA also clarified that PhilID would not replace existing functional IDs that serve other purposes. Functional IDs such as passports, driving licenses, and other valid IDs will remain the responsibility of the issuing government agencies.
PSA has set to start the registration of the general public by 2021. In fact, the agency has announced the launch of the online registration for the country’s national ID on April 30.
Through the online portal, applicants for the national identification system may now be able to process Step 1 of the registration. Check out the steps below.
• Step 1 – Collection of demographic data and appointment-setting for Step 2
Information to be collected and stored under the PhilSys shall be limited to the following:
– Blood type
– Filipino or Resident Alien
– Marital status, mobile number, email address (optional)
After registering online, applicants will still have to personally go to their chosen registration centers to capture biometric information and validate supporting documents.
• Step 2 – Validation of supporting documents and capture of biometric information
Biometric information includes the following:
– Iris scan
– Front-facing photograph
• Step 3 – Issuance of the PhilSys Number (PSN) and the PhilID (physical card).
The PSA mentioned that the PSN and PhilID would then be delivered to the applicant via PHLPost.
PhilSys applicants are advised to present an original copy of at least one (1) of the following:
• Primary Documents:
- PSA-issued Certificate of Live Birth and one (1) government-issued identification document which bears the full name, front-facing photograph, and signature or thumb mark.
- DFA-issued Philippine Passport or e-passport
- GSIS or SSS-issued Unified Multi-purpose Identification Card (UMID)
- Land Transportation Office (LTO)-issued Student’s License Permit or Non-Professional/Professional Driver’s License
• Secondary Documents:
- PSA-issued Certificate of Live Birth/NSO-issued Certificate of Live Birth with Birth Reference Number (BreN)
- LCRO-issued Certificate of Live Birth
- PSA-issued Report of Birth
- PSA-issued Certificate of Foundling
- Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Identification Card
- Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC) ID
- Seaman’s Book
- Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) ID
- Senior Citizen’s ID
- SSS ID
- Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) ID
- License to Own or Possess Firearms (LTOPF) ID
- NBI Clearance
- Police Clearance/ID
- Solo Parent’s ID
- PWD ID
- Voter’s ID
- Postal ID
- Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) ID
- Philhealth ID
- Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA)-issued Special Resident Retiree’s Visa (SRRV)
- National ID from other countries
- Residence ID from other countries
The PSA also noted that the following identification documents should be accepted as secondary supporting documents provided that they have a front-facing photograph, signature/thumbmark, full name, permanent address, date of birth.
- Employee ID
- School ID
- Barangay Clearance/Certificate
- Barangay ID
- City/Municipal ID
PhilSys Data Privacy and Security
According to the PSA, the government agency ensures the privacy, security, and integrity of registered persons’ data. With that said, sufficient safeguards shall be in place to ensure information security, cybersecurity, data protection, and privacy in compliance with the Data Privacy Act.
Furthermore, the PSA has been working closely with the National Privacy Commission (NPC), the DICT, and the National Security Council regarding the architecture and processes of the PhilSys and identifying and mitigating privacy cybersecurity risks.
What’s more, the PhilSys design adopts Privacy by Design principles wherein privacy is incorporated into its technologies by default and from the start. The PSA revealed that the PhilSys collects and stores minimal data, and the PhilSys Number (PSN) is fully randomized; thus, it does not reveal any information about the person, such as their date of birth.
To recap, in January 2021, PSA has announced the Step 2 registration process for the PhilSys to begin in select provinces. The agency has also declared a gradual and small-scale rollout of the Step 2 PhilSys registration for those who have taken the first step of the registration phase for the PhilSys.
The initial phase of Step 2 Registration runs from January to April 2021. It targets to register 10.6 million Filipinos who have accomplished the Step 1 Registration in 2020.
As of April 17, 2021, 30.7 million Filipinos have completed Step 1, while 4,416,499 applicants have completed Step 2 of the PhilSys registration. PSA reported 53,211 average registrations per day. Currently, PhilSys registration is at 41.5% of the target by June 2021.
Meanwhile, the PSA aims to register the majority of Filipinos by the end of 2022.