Kwanwoo Jun reports:
South Korea this week introduced new alternative identification numbers designed to lessen the use of official “resident registration” numbers and so protect people from ID theft.
All residents in Korea have the official 13-digit ID numbers that are widely used for almost everything ranging from buying goods online to opening a bank account. The ID numbers are like a master key.
But concerns have grown in South Korea since January when the country reported a case of information theft of information—including resident ID numbers and phone numbers—on about 104 million credit cards. The scandal, that led to the suspension of operations at the country’s three credit-card issuers, has pressured the government to make the important resident ID numbers less vulnerable to such leaks.
Read more on WSJ.
In related news, Lee Kyung-min reports:
Hospitals continue to collect resident registration numbers from their patients, defying a newly enacted law that bans private entities from gathering personal information.
However, they say that they have no choice but to continue to collect the identification numbers from patients since they have no alternatives to distinguish their customers. They insist that they should be exempted from the new law, which took effect Thursday.
Read more on Korea Times.