National

My Number system begins sharing data between government bodies

by Magdalena Osumi

Staff Writer

Documents submitted to municipalities can amount to a lot of paperwork, whether it is an application for benefits, a scholarship or for public day care centers.

But starting Monday, there may be less paperwork for those who use the My Number identification system as residents’ data is now being shared between central and local governments, administrative bodies and other institutions such as Hello Work, the nationwide public employment service.

Officials say this will reduce the need for the pile of documents that until now has often been necessary.

“Before, applicants were required to submit a number of documents. Now, they can benefit from the system as copies of some of the documents will no longer be required,” an official from the Cabinet Office said by telephone.

“It is supposed to make these procedures simpler for both the residents and the operating bodies,” said the official, who asked not to be named in line with Cabinet Office policy.

The system enables operators to identify all applicants, even if they have the same first and last name.

Monday’s move will do away with the need to submit a resident’s registry and taxation certificate when applying for child allowances or day care services.

Less paperwork is now required for about 870 applications, including for scholarships and welfare benefits.

The government hopes to eventually expand it to 1,800 procedures, a large portion of them relating to the public pension system, as early as next year. The delay for full-scale implementation was due to security precautions instigated in the wake of a data leak at the Japan Pension Service, which was hacked in 2015. The official said personal data concerning 1.25 million people was leaked.

Applicants who have a My Number identification card can also check registry records and other information stored by relevant bodies by accessing the government-run Myna Portal website.

In some municipalities, applicants can apply necessary administrative procedures such as applying for places for children at day care centers via the Myna Portal website.

GET THE BEST OF THE JAPAN TIMES
IN FIVE EASY PIECES WITH TAKE 5