Israel’s Biometric ID & Passport Documents
Thousands of ID cards and travel documents are lost or stolen annually in Israel. The new forge-proof Israeli smart ID and passport includes biometric data and measures unique to each person in a manner that uniquely identifies the card holder.
The Smart ID Card
The Smart ID card contains an electronic chip with the unique biometric measures and data of the person including a facial features image and images of the fingerprints of both forefingers. Embedded in the ID card are also details of the owner’s identity. The smart ID card is the same size as a credit card.
As of 1st June, 2017 all new Israeli identity documents issued will be biometric. New olim arriving at Ben Gurion will receive a Teudat Oleh and thereafter they have to get their new ID at Misrad HaPnim
The Biometric Passport
The new travel document (passport or Laissez-passer) also contains an electronic chip with the unique biometric measures and data of the person who holds it. The biometric travel document contains many forge-proof security measures. It is also embedded with technology that allows quick automatic crossing at airports and border crossings in Israel and abroad.
What are the other advantages of the smart biometric documentation?
In addition to the many security mechanisms incorporated into the biometric ID, the technology ensures that the information cannot be changed, added to, duplicated or forged.
Smart ID card allows you to identify yourself online from home and perform various activities on Israel government websites and institutions, by entering a personal password given to the smart ID card’s holder.
Smart ID card also enables the use of certified electronic signature with various agencies who opt to use it.
If the smart ID card is lost, stolen or has been misused by unknown entity, it is possible to revoke its use by calling the service center phone *3450, 24 hours a day, or personally at the the Population and Immigration Authority around the country.
Am I eligible for a Smart ID?
If you are applying for your first ID documents or first Israeli passport, you will be issued a biometric one. All new issues will be biometric.
If you have a regular ID card and passport, you have the option to apply for a biometric one.
- Government Ministries contact information
- Useful terminology for government ministries and public offices with Hebrew, English and transliterations
How do I get a Smart ID?
Here are the details – step by step.
- Applicants must appear in person at one of the bureaus of the Population and Immigration Authority (Misrad Hapnim) and identify themselves using an existing ID card.
- The applicants must sign an application form and a letter of approval and consent, according to which they approve of taking their biometric identification.
- The applicant’s identity is then determined through few random computer generated security questions.
- Finally, the applicants will sign a form detailing the manner in which the document may be used and the obligations imposed upon the holder of the smart document, such as preventing misuse of the document.
- As of June 8th, 2017, in order to apply for a biometric document (Hebrew: teudat zehut, darkon or teudat ma’avar), you must first set up an appointment with your nearest branch of Misrad Hapnim (Ministry of Interior). You can do this online via their website or use the MyVisit Appointment app.
- Once you have scheduled your appointment you download the application form online, print it out and take it with you to your appointment.
Filling in the Hebrew application form online
Once you have clicked through to the link provided above, you will notice Hebrew instructions – there are 4 steps involved:
1. Verify eligibility
2. Complete the form
4. Print the form
Notes for Applicants
- 12 and younger? For applicants under the age of 12, only their facial features will be photographed. Their fingerprints will not be scanned.
- 16 years old? Israeli residents or citizens aged 16 and over must be accompanied by one of the parents if the parents are married, or accompanied by both if they are not married to each other.
- Not yet 18 years old? Biometric travel document (passport or Laissez-passer) applicants, must personally show up at the Population and Immigration Authority and must be accompanied by one of the parents if the parents are married, or accompanied by both if they are not married to each other. The presence of the parents is required to identify the and signing the letter of consent.
How long does it take? It officially takes 10 working days for the biometric card to be processed. You may be lucky enough to have it processed on the spot. If not, you will receive a text message (SMS) notifying that the document is ready. Smart passports and any other travel documents, on the other hand, will be sent to the applicant by registered mail within ten working days. Upon the receipt of the ID card, the applicant will receive a personal password to operate it and appendix containing the personal details.
What must I do with my old ID card? You must return the old ID card upon receipt of the new one. Failure to do so will result in having to pay a fee.
My obligations? Residents must keep their identity card in their possession and under their control at all times, carry it with them at all times and not allow anyone else to use it for authentication or signature unless by written consent.
What to do in case of loss, theft or misuse? If an ID card is lost or stolen or misused it must immediately be reported to the Population and Immigration Authority (Misrad HaPnim).
Quick dial *3450 and ask to cancel the card. You will be required to answer a few security and identification questions.
A personal password The applicant will be given a personal password when receiving the biometric smart card. The password is intended for carrying out transactions using the smart ID card, including performing remote services with government and financial institutions. Using the password, you can identify yourself in a safe and secure manner. Using the personal password, the signature of the cardholder can be verified.
What online actions can I take with the smart ID card?
Electronic Verification allows 24/7 identification, access to services and perform actions on government sites and other websites using your smart ID card and personal four-digit password.
Electronic signature will allow the card holder to sign documents and forms using certified electronic signature. The certified electronic signature has legal force just like signing documents manually. Electronic signatures will allow filling in online forms and signing on them and on documents online directly from your computer, anywhere. In some cases defined by law, electronic signature will not be possible, such as in real estate transactions, Inheritances and more. Electronic signature will be integrated into the smart ID card only if the applicant requests it at the time of the application for smart ID card.