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Know your Emirates ID privileges and benefits in the UAE

Yousuf Saifuddin Kapadia (Web Journalist)
Filed on October 8, 2016 | Last updated on October 8, 2016 at 12.07 pm
Know your Emirates ID privileges and benefits in the UAE

A recent survey showed that 45% of Emirates ID holders did not know about the privileges the card had to offer.

An opinion poll conducted by the Emirates Identity Authority on its portal, earlier this year, revealed that only 30.56 per cent know the benefits of the card, while 45 per cent were unaware of the privileges of the card has to offer which include facilitating transactions and applications in both the government and private sector, as well as the online and smart services provided by many entities in the country.

As many as 6,000 people took part in the opinion poll which was conducted by Eida.

Here are some of the recent benefits and privileges that can be availed on the smart identity card:

Privileged use for Emirates ID at Dubai airport

Residents of UAE, including expatriates, could use their Emirates ID card at the e-gate in Dubai International Airport Terminal 3 upon arrival.

General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) in Dubai in corporation with Emirates Identity Authority (EID) had recently implemented successfully the electronic gate system service (E-gate) on the identity card. Another benefit is, the card holders need not activate the service at the EID prior to travel.

ID card activated via smart gate in Terminal 3

The GDRFA launched yesterday the Easy Departure Easy Arrival initiative.

The initiative includes integration of the ID card issued by the Emirates ID Authority into the smart gate at the Dubai International Airport.

The initiative aims to facilitate travel procedures according to the UAE government strategy that looks for an advanced mechanism to keep pace with the great progress in all fields.

Easy Departure Easy Arrival was launched at arrivals hall and departure lounge in Terminal 3 as one of the initiatives launched by airport service team (grey team) within the City Builder competition held by HH Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of the Executive Council.

The competition was designed to develop several governmental services shared by many public authorities based on specific standards that reflect how important these services are and how useful to improve it.

The United Arab Emirates is one of the first countries to introduce smart gates at its airport, said Mr. Al Ghafli. This gate represents a paradigm shift in services offered to travellers at Dubai International Airport. The services involved in this shift include finishing travel procedures in a record time via multiple documents that are easier to verify, allowing them to avoid passport window queues.

Dr. Al Ghafli said that the Emirates ID Authority gives priority to development of ID card features to make it more valuable and important in the UAE. Such services include adding smart gates service to the ID card to use it instead of the passport.

The system does not allow children under 15 years old to pass. Instead, a special employee will complete their travel procedures while their parents are passing the smart gates.

Credit history

- The UAE's debt quality watchdog, Al Etihad Credit Bureau, recently started to allowed banks to access information to those seeking credit using their Emirates ID cards. The facility is part of the bureau's strategy to digitize services.

Banks can easily find out a customer's credit history by using their Emirates ID.

The chip on the card includes the personal data to be read automatically in usages that require the holder to provide an identity evidence and authentication. Some of these data are encrypted and only readable/writable/updatable by the authorized authorities in order to protect the privacy of data. This chip may store up to 32 thousand letters of information.

Sharjah to use ID card for medical insurance

Sharjah Medical District intends to integrate the ID card into medical insurance system as of the next year (2017).

Abdelaziz Shattaf Al Ali, Secretary of Sharjah Youth Shura Council said that the council has presented a proposal to integrate the ID card into the medical insurance system instead of medical card.

The proposal was made in a session in which the council hosted Sharjah Medical District. This step, said Al Ali, helps to radically reduce the fraud, waste and misuse and facilitate transactions of the cardholders.

The recommendation committee follows up the application of the proposal through a team that is coordinating and monitoring the application stages, said Al Ali. The council does not only draft the recommendations, it also follows up them throughout all phases.

The relevant authorities will take gradual steps to change and add insurance programmes to the ID card which will show information of the beneficiary or customer via an embedded chip.  

- Umm Al Quwain's Khalifa General Hospital earlier this month, linked patient data to Emirates ID.

The hostpital announced the approval of the ID card in all patient transactions as of this February.

According to a press release issued, Resa van Der, acting director of Khalifa General Hospital, confirmed that linking the medical file to the ID card saves time and effort for customers and make procedure easier and more accurate.

"The linking process is important for providing comprehensive and accurate data for institutions at the United Arab Emirates for innovative governmental services,"she said.

- ADNOC linked it's self service petrol stations with Emirates ID. Earlier this month, the oil Abu Dhabi based oil distribution company announced that it will launch ID card use in pilot fuelling self-service "ADNOC SMART" to allow customers pay for gasoline using three methods of payment including the ID card that will be connected to and activated in ADNOC Wallet in Abu Dhabi.

ADNOC Distribution said that the pilot stage of service will last until the first day of next October in 2016, covering four service stations at Abu Dhabi Island.

Emirates ID card benefits

- Identification and Verification as per International Standards
- Protect individuals' identity
- Can be used to access Secure eServices
- Provides Identity Information
- Stores many ID applications in future
- Prevents fraud & Identity Theft
- Portable personal database

It will allow customers to fuel their car personally using the latest technological solution according to a variety of payment methods.

Besides the use of the ID card, ADNOC Wallet includes two methods of payment: the smart chip to be installed on the fuel pump and linked to ADNOC Wallet account and ADNOC Plus card that can be used by customers to fill up their cars with petrol.

ADNOC Distribution called on customers to obtain ADNOC Wallet account by visiting its website to get full control of financial transactions and avoid long queues at stations.

- In January, Dubai Islamic Insurance and Reinsurance Company "Aman", announced substituting the health insurance cards of its customers, whether citizens or residents, with their ID cards issued by the Emirates Identity Authority.

Jihad Faitrouni, CEO of Aman Insurance Company said in a press release, that the 'integration of the health insurance card and the ID card came in line with the decision of Dubai Health Authority, as it will contribute to the reduction of fraud and misuse operations by confirming the identity of the beneficiaries of the insurance and downloading their data directly using the ID card e-reader device, thus saving time and effort for both customers and insurance companies.'

- Dubai Municipality announced in January this year, the start of registration of all its employees who benefit of the health insurance services in the new common system which relies on the use of ID number as a substitute to "Inaya" card which was previously used, in implementation of the Health Insurance Law in the emirate.

The Municipality added that the new system, which is flexible, and accurate links the health insurance for each beneficiary of "Inaya" program to the ID number, which represents the only identification code to obtain the various health services in hospitals and medical centers.

In February, EIDA held a meeting to discuss the timely completion of all EIDA projects up to highest quality and transparency standards in order to achieve the desired results.

As the current strategy would come to the stop this year, EIDA called on all sectors, departments, units and employees to intensify efforts and focus on 2014-2016 Strategy goals, applying EIDA's vision for an integrated stat-of-the-art identity management system.

EIDA's director general stressed on promoting their smart services, provide and drum up interest in more benefits and services, and meet the requirements and standards of e-government services.

EIDA has made enormous strides in service activation on mobile phones and smart devices, according to Dr. Al Ghafli. It enables the public and private institutions to take the advantage of its projects in launching e-services based on ID card features.  

Earlier in January, EIDA had worked on allocating space on the ID chip to store health data of 12 fields. The Authority confirmed its readiness to support the entities wishing to take advantage of the ID card features and its smart chip, to be able to link its customers' records to their ID numbers or to download the basic data of the ID card holder on the chip within the allocated storage fields.

EIDA explained that it allocated in the card chip space to store health data of the ID card holder including 12 fields, including blood type, chronic diseases, infectious diseases, and allergies, as well as the approval of organ donation, birth defects and disabilities, in addition to surgeries undergone by the ID card holder, the surgical procedures, basic and subsidiary vaccinations, long-term medication, hardware or composite struts for the patient, in addition to the date of the last update.

National Health Insurance Company, "Daman", has started using the identity card of the people enrolled in the health insurance system instead of the insurance cards.

The ID card reader allows the concerned authorities to access the individuals' data in the electronic chip.

EIDA said that relying on the ID number makes it easier for patients to complete the health insurance transactions through digital signature, which is being identified through the digital identification gate of the Emirates Identity Authority.

In a press release issued on January 9, EIDA had said that 580 entities, both private and government, had adopted the e-reader for the ID card.

The website of the e-readers provides a range of services, including downloading the program of fingerprints and cards e-readers, as well as the settings program and its updates, in addition to a detailed presentation of the various types of e-readers that are compatible with the identity card systems and that EIDA recommends.

Abdul Aziz Al Maamari, Director of Government and Social Communication at EIDA, said that the authority has made customer satisfactiona top priority, and strives to keeping touch with them and overcome any obstacles they may face.





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