August 24, 2018

MANILA—Concerned government agencies, together with the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) as the primary implementing agency, are ready to enforce the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) Act, starting off with the crafting of its implementing rules and regulations (IRR).

The PhilSys Act or Republic Act No. 11055, which creates a central identification platform for all citizens and resident foreigners in the Philippines, will take effect on August 25, 2018.

The PhilSys Policy and Coordination Council (PSPCC), the inter-agency body that will formulate policies and guidelines to ensure effective coordination among the different agencies tasked to implement the PhilSys, convened in an orientation meeting on August 15 to jump-start its implementation.

Co-chaired by Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia and National Statistician and Civil Registrar General Lisa Grace S. Bersales, head of the PSA, the Council agreed to form a technical working group to finalize the measure’s IRR.

The PSPCC’s members include the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), the National Privacy Commission (NPC), Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Department of Budget and Management (DBM), Department of Finance (DOF), Department of Social Welfare and Development, Department of the Interior Local Government (DILG), Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), Social Security System (SSS), and the Philippine Postal Corporation (PHILPost).

The IRR is scheduled to be made public next month. This will be followed by the dissemination of information regarding the bidding and procurement process for the PhilSys’s components, including the production and issuance of the identification card, the PhilID.

“The government values each Filipino and is working constantly to provide easy access to public goods and services.  Establishing a safe and secure means to prove identity is a step towards that direction. The PhilSys Act is all about inclusivity; it promotes our aspiration for every Filipino to enjoy a matatag, maginhawa, at panatag na buhay,” NEDA Undersecretary for Policy and Planning Rosemarie G. Edillon said.

She added marginalized groups such as indigenous peoples and the poor will benefit the most from the PhilID as it will facilitate better access to government assistance and services.

“The PhilID simplifies public and private transactions by enabling everyone to have a valid proof of identity. This is in sync with our main development agenda of leaving no one behind towards wider economic inclusion,” Edillon said.

The PhilID shall streamline and expedite applications for the availment of, among others, social welfare and benefits from the government; tax-related transactions; opening of bank accounts; and transactions for employment purposes.

Under the law, the PhilID will contain the registrant’s biometric information, along with seven demographic data such as full name, sex, date of birth, place of birth, blood type, address, nationality, and three optional information, specifically, marital status, mobile number, and email address. The PhilSys Act requires that said personal information be kept in a resilient data system to ensure that the people’s right to privacy, confidentiality and other basic rights, such as those guaranteed by the Data Privacy Act of 2012, are upheld. 

Edillon, likewise, said the government, led by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), the National Privacy Commission (NPC), and the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), will develop and implement measures to keep the database of the PhilSys registry secure and private.