Japan to implement national identity system

04/09/15

Japan’s parliament voted on Thursday to extend a “My Number” unique identity number system to cover bank accounts, raising the prospect of the identity covering a wider range of services.

The number could be used to cover everything from health insurance, passports and vaccination records to dealings with private companies.

Previously, Japan has not had an equivalent of a US social security number.

Under the Social Security and Tax Number System, mayors issue a single Individual Number to each and every person holding a resident record who resides in their municipalities. In principle, once an Individual Number has been issued, it does not change for the duration of the recipient's life.

Currently, there are no plans to require citizens to submit biometric data, such as fingerprint or iris scans, in order to enroll.

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