UN recognises UAE national ID as leading biometric programme
Emirates Identity Authority database includes 105m finger prints
The United Nations has recognised the UAE National Identity Card scheme as one of the leading biometric ID implementations in the world.
In the 2014 E-Government Survey Report, the UN describes the National ID Registration Programme as "one of the world's best biometric programmes".
The national ID card programme, administered by the Emirates Identity Authority, has collected finger prints of all the citizens and legal residents above the age of 15 in the UAE. The biometric database, which has also been recognised by the World Record's Academy as the largest biometric database in the world, includes 105 million prints of rolled fingerprints, plan and hand side prints, in addition to over 15 million facial images.
Biometric enrolment is part of the mandatory health certification for all expatriates. The best two finger prints taken from the applicant are stored in a secure, encrypted container in the Smart Card that is issued as the National ID Card. The Smart Card is provided with a Match-On-Card Applet which allows for a biometric verification and authentication enabling assertion of an individual's identity on demand. The security on the ID Card is ensured by the encrypted containers, which are enabled only through the National Validation Gateway. All the biometrics, data transmission and protocols are as per ANSI and/or ISO Standards.
HE Dr Ali Mohamed Al Khouri, director general of Emirates Identity Authority, commented: "It is a tribute to the noble vision of the UAE's leadership. I hope this will inspire other countries in the region and elsewhere to embark on innovative identity management initiatives whose advantages straddle diverse spheres, including financial and capital markets, national security and good governance. Our current initiatives in providing trust services and mobile ID services are expected to bring about significant transformations in sync with the other smart initiatives in the country."