New Smart ID card next year


Home Affairs Minister, Naledi Pandor with the new Smartcard ID (SAPA)

The new South African smart ID cards will start being issued in the new year. The cost of the card had not yet been determined. The minister for Home Affairs said the cost would not exceed that of the current green bar-coded identity document, which the card would replace.

A microchip, the specifications for which cannot be disclosed for security reasons, will house the necessary biometric data and the information on the chip will be laser-engraved to prevent tampering.

A range of physical and data-security features was being considered, and that there was also ongoing discussion about whether to include provision for a pin code as a secondary means of verification, to complement the biometric features of the card. The minister said the department was discussing how to implement the process. One option would be to issue smart ID cards to first applicants. The project was likely to be implemented over the next four years. For more info on the ID cards read the Government Gazette (click hyperlink).


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