Friday, August 12, 2011

MyKad: The Malaysia Government Multipurpose Smart Identity Card

MyKad, or Government Multipurpose Card (GMPC) is the official compulsory identity card of Malaysia. MyKad is considered as world’s first smart identity card. The MyKad or GMPC project is part of the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) initiative. MyKad was officially launched on September 5, 2001 and incorporates a microchip, which contains several items of data including biometrics. From March 2003, a variant of this identity card for newborn babies was introduced, known as MyKid.
The word “My” in “MyKad” signifies Malaysia’s top level domain country code .my and also indicating personal ownership of the card. The word “Kad” is the acronym of “Kad Akuan Diri” or translated as “Personal Identification Card” as well as “Kad Aplikasi Digital” (Digital Application Card) and also means “card”.
Malaysian Citizens owns blue coloured MyKad. Permanent Residents owns red coloured MyKad.
Eligibility for MyKad
All Malaysian citizens and permanent residents 12 years old or above are eligible for a MyKad. All newborn babies are issued with a MyKid. This is “upgraded” to a MyKad on the 12th birthday. The MyKad must be replaced when a person reaches 18 years old, as it is a requirement that the photograph be ‘current’. MyKad must be carried at all times. Failure to do so may incur a fine of between RM3,000 and RM20,000 or jail term of up to three years.
Functions of MyKad
The MyKad is a piece of plastic with an embedded microchip and has the dimensions of a standard credit card. MyKad contains a 64Kb EEPROM (Electrically Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory) chip running on the M-COS (MyKad Chip Operating System) operating system.
Functions available in MyKad are:
  • Identity card, including fingerprints and photo
  • Driving licence information
  • Passport in Malaysia
  • Storage for health information
  • e-cash
  • ATM integration
  • Touch ‘n Go, Malaysia’s toll road tolling system and also public transport payment system
  • Digital certificate, commonly known as Public Key Infrastructure (PKI)
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