Malaysia plans to roll out national digital identification

The ID will not replace the MyKad but instead become the ‘bridge for verification’


The government plans to introduce a national digital identification (ID) to complement the existing MyKad, as more Malaysians perform transactions and businesses digitally.

Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo said the proposed digital ID, which is being developed by several agencies under his ministry, will fit into the digitised global environment.

Besides the digital ID, the ministry is also improving the security of govt and agencies’ databases, says Gobind

“I hope a concrete proposal can be finalised by the middle of next year after which we will see whether the proposal needs any law reforms or the introduction of new laws,” he said after attending the E-Commerce and Entrepreneurship Summit in Petaling Jaya yesterday.

He said the ID will not replace the MyKad but instead become the “bridge for verification”.

“This digital ID is not meant to replace the MyKad nor it is mandatory for everyone. A national digital ID is meant to provide a platform of trust, a verifiable platform of trust,” he said.

Besides the digital ID, he said the ministry is also improving the security of government and agencies’ databases, following a series of breaches and hacking in the country.

He said enhancements to the databases’ firewall are critical for the government to safeguard crucial personal information especially with the proposed digital ID system.

Gobind said digital ID has been implemented in several developed countries and Malaysia will study its implementation and if it is found to be suitable, the model will be replicated in the country.

Gobind also gave an example of how digital ID can be applied in today’s environment.

He said in many instances or applications, Malaysians are required to furnish a photocopy of the MyKad for verification.

“In comparison, this is what a national digital ID can offer. You can apply to be a member of an organisation by registering your app using the national digital ID. This would be a trusted and verifiable plat form,” he added, adding that the digital ID would also form an integral and crucial platform for the government’s digital initiatives.

He said among the apps of the digital ID are targeted subsidies via an eWallet account and online transactions.

“The national digital ID will allow trusted e-commerce transactions where both the seller and buyer are verified using a secured national digital ID system, thus eliminating elements of fraud and cheating,” Gobind said.