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EXCLUSIVE:

New features of Kenya's new 3rd generation ID aka Maisha Card

5 ways the new digital ID will change life for Kenyans

President William Ruto set to unveil Kenya 3rd generation digital ID

President William Ruto is set to transform the country’s population identity and database by launching the 3rd generation Kenyan identification system.

This will be a significant technological upgrade in the registration and identification of citizens.

Immigration and Citizen Services PS, Julius Bitok, said that the State Department would not use any extra money to roll out the program which has four main components; UPI (Maisha Namba), 3rd generation ID (Maisha card), a virtual card and a master population register.

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For adults, their current ID numbers will be used as their UPI (Maisha Namba) and will save millions from having to register again.

Pulse News Desk has obtained exclusive details on the features of the new digital ID which will store every person’s biometric data in a chip.

The Maisha Card (3rd generation ID) will have extra security features that will only be visible under UV light on both the front and back sides.

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After its launch, the government will stop the issuance of the 2nd generation ID and everyone who applies for a new ID or replacement will be given the new Maisha Card.

While the old ID was made of Teslin material, the new card will be made of polycarbonate.

Polycarbonate stands out as the ultimate choice for security due to various factors. Its tamper-proof nature ensures the card's layers remain inseparable once formed.

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In contrast to Teslin, an attempt to peel off the top layer to alter information beneath it would only result in the card breaking.

The Maisha Card will be available in a digital format for Kenyans with smartphones, which they will be able to activate by themselves on the eCitizen platform.

With the virtual card, Kenyans will not have to use physical ID cards for purposes of identification at security points such as airports and entry to buildings.

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The virtual card will have a QR code that will be used to authenticate a person’s identity. The virtual card will also enable Kenyans to perform transactions on the eCitizen platform by using a digital signature that will be secure.

Unlike Huduma Namba, Kenyans will not be forced to enrol afresh. Instead, they will be onboarded on a need basis.

According to the State Department of Citizen Service, the government issues 1.5 million new IDs and 3 million ID replacements annually.

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The fourth element of the new system is the development of a master population database that will consolidate information from various government agencies.

The National Population Master Register will be a centralised electronic population database.

It will also come as a relief to Kenyans that they would not need to go through a fresh exercise to have their details collected but existing databases will be cleaned and fed to the master register.

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