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Everything You Need To Know About Getting A National ID Or PhySys
PHOTO BY Shutterstock/RosaLin Zhen Zhen
  • Pretty soon, scrambling to find two valid government IDs in your purse might be a thing of the past.

    When the use of the National ID system or PhilSys is fully implemented by the Philippine Systems Authority (PSA), all you might need is to pull out that one ID to get through whatever transactions you need to.

    Yes, the hope for this whole system is to simplify our life.

    What is a National ID System or PhilSys?

    It was signed into law August 2018, under Republic Act 11055 or the Philippine Identification System (PhilSys) Act. The move aims to establish a single national ID for all Filipinos and resident aliens.

    What are the benefits of having a national ID?

    It serves as a valid proof of identity

    You can use it to transact with the government and other private sectors.

    It can help boost efficiency of services

    As a social and economic platform, the ID aims to boost efficiency, especially in dealing with government and private sector services where people will only need to present the ID during transactions.

    It can eliminate the need for other IDs

    No need to present other forms of identification. This means easier government and private sector transactions, subject too authentication measures.

    To date, the PSA has been able to roll out the following:

    Step 1: The house-to-house collection of demographic information last October 2020.

    Step 2: The process of validating supporting documents and capturing of biometric information at registration centers nationwide on January 4, 2021.


    It will not replace other functional IDs

    The PSA makes it clear on its website that the National ID will not replace the existing functional IDs (see list below) that serve other purposes.

    Rather it functions as a foundational ID which "serves as a valid proof of identity which would help ease transactions with both government and private sector through easier validation and authentication of identity."

    Under the PhilSys, the following government IDs will be linked with a person's/customer's reference numbers (CRN):

    • SSS
    • Pag-IBIG
    • PhilHealth
    • Passport number
    • Voter's registration
    • Tax Identification Number (TIN)
    • Driver's license number

    Moreover, the ID will have a smart chip that will contain unique information associated with a person such as biometrics, iris scan, facial image reception code, full set of fingerprint, among other distinguishing features.

    The ID will also be valid for State Universities and Colleges.

    What do you need to prepare to get your National ID?

    Applicants are advised to present an original copy of one (1) of the following to be able to register:

    • PSA-issued Certificate of Live Birth together with one (1) government-issued identification document bearing full name, front-facing photograph, and signature or thumb mark
    • Philippine Passport issued by the DFA
    • Unified Multi-Purpose Identification* (UMID) Card issued by the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) and Social Security System (SSS)
    • Valid LTO-issued Student's License Permit or Non-Professional/Professional Driver's License

    Applicant may find a full list of accepted documentary requirements at the back of the PhilSys Registration Form.

    Who are eligible to apply for a National ID?

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    All Filipinos are eligible to apply for PhilSys and this includes Overseas Filipino Workers as well as dual citizens living in another country.

    There is no expiration for the ID once issued and will only be replaced if there is a need to update information or if the card is damaged or has a defect.

    Foreigners or resident aliens are also eligible to apply for the national ID but it will only be valid for one year

    Where can you register?

    According to the PSA website, they will establish fixed and mobile registration centers in strategic locations to register the population to PhilSys.

    Currently, PSA is in coordination with LGUs, government agencies, and private sector for updates on the exact locations of registration centers which will be released prior to the opening of PhilSys registration.

    PSA also announced that the agency will release an official advisory on hired and trained enumerators for Step 2 registration.

    PSA Undersecretary Dennis Mapa on Dec. 12 has called on the public to contact their agency through PhilSys official Facebook Page, or through hotline 1388 for any questions about the National ID.

    In the case of Filipinos residing abroad, they may inquire or register with the Philippine Embassy or other centers identified by the Department of Foreign Affairs.

    Would a National ID compromise my data privacy and security?

    According to the PSA website, sufficient safeguards will be in place to ensure information security, cybersecurity, data protection, and privacy in compliance with the Data Privacy Act.


    The PSA is working closely with the National Privacy Commission (NPC), the DICT, and the National Security Council regarding the processes of the PhilSys, including to identify and mitigate privacy and cybersecurity risks.

    "The PhilSys design adopts Privacy by Design principles wherein privacy is incorporated into its technologies by default and from the start."

    Citing an example, the PhilSys say it only collects and stores minimal data and the PhilSys Number (PSN) is fully randomized, not revealing any information about the person such as their date of birth.

    For more information about PhilSys, please visit the PSA website.

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