Hong Kong: Smart Identity Cards to be Replaced

The Hong Kong Immigration Department has announced that by the end of 2018, all smart identity cards for temporary and permanent residents will be replaced by new versions with enhanced security features and a design that protects against forgery and counterfeiting.

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Mar 28, 2018
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The situation

The Hong Kong Immigration Department (HKID) has announced that current smart identity cards will be replaced by new versions that feature enhanced security features and a design that protects against forgery and counterfeiting.

A closer look

  • New features. The new smart cards will feature:
    • Polycarbonate materials and a chip interface, which will reduce damage to the chip and make the cards more durable;
    • State-of-the-art security features; and
    • An improved design to prevent counterfeiting.
  • Added self-service facilities. The HKID will introduce more convenient self-service facilities to the public for registration and collection of the smart identity cards including:
    • Appointment booking and form pre-filling online/through a mobile app; and
    • Self-service registration and collection kiosks.
  • Timeline. It is anticipated that the replacement exercise will start by the end of 2018 and will last until 2022.

Impact on foreign nationals

The replacement exercise will be conducted in phases based on the cardholder’s year of birth. When their birth year is selected, foreign nationals should plan to obtain their new cards early to avoid the rush of other applicants. Fragomen will provide information on this program as it becomes available.

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen or send an email to HKInitiations@fragomen.com.

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Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy, LLP, Fragomen Global LLP and affiliates, (collectively known as “Fragomen Worldwide”) is the world’s largest firm dedicated to corporate immigration, and is recognized as the leading global immigration services provider.

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