In her address to the Reconnaissance High Security Printing Conference being held in Malta, Parliamentary Secretary for Reforms, Citizenship and Simplification of Administrative Processes Julia Farrugia Portelli announced that by the end of 2019, Identity Malta will kickstart the process to have all passports and e-ID cards replaced with technologically advanced new e-ID cards and e-passports.
The new e-ID card design and specifications are being finalised and the document will incorporate all features laid down in the EU proposal to strengthen identity card security and, unless there are any radical changes to the draft regulation, Malta plans to be amongst the first member states to start rolling out the new documents later this year.
The new travel and identification documents will be printed on a polycarbonate card using high definition laser technology. Furthermore, the new e-ID card will incorporate a contactless chip in order to capture additional biometric data. The said documents will have additional security features that will further prevent document counterfeit and the fraudulent use of other people’s identity.
Contrary to the 2014 nationwide mass roll out, the issuance of the new e-passport and e-ID is set to take place in gradual manner and over a number of years. Existing ID cards and passports will remain valid and fit for purpose until their expiry date. Upon renewal, Identity Malta Agency will then issue the new travel or identification document at no additional cost.
In her concluding remarks, Parliamentary Secretary Farrugia Portelli stressed that although existing Maltese e-ID cards and e-passports are considered to be highly secure, complying with international security standards, Malta is taking a pro-active approach in safeguarding the citizens’ identity.
Parliamentary Secretary Farrugia Portelli was addressing the Reconnaissance High Security Printing EMEA Conference, which is currently being held in Malta in the presence of 400 delegates from 50 different countries.
Original article found on The Malta Independent