Fill in e-transaction forms with less hassle soon

Launched in May last year, MyInfo pulls personal data, such as names, NRIC numbers and addresses, from public agencies.
Launched in May last year, MyInfo pulls personal data, such as names, NRIC numbers and addresses, from public agencies.PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

A click of the button is all that is needed to automatically fill in e-transaction forms of locally registered businesses from next year.

This is happening as the Government extends the integration of its digital vault of personal data to the private sector.

GovTech, the government agency which oversees technology transformation in the public sector, launched the MyInfo Developer and Partner Portal yesterday.

They provide commercial partners with the tools to use MyInfo, which allows users to auto-fill e-transaction forms online.

Launched in May last year, MyInfo pulls personal data, such as names, NRIC numbers and addresses, from public agencies. It was initially rolled out for only a handful of e-transactions on some government portals, like public housing and Baby Bonus scheme applications.

With MyInfo, users can do away with manually filling in online forms. Instead, MyInfo will auto-populate all form entries.

The extension of MyInfo to the private sector will mean users can fill in e-forms for other commercial platforms. GovTech said more than 100 businesses in the private sector such as those in telecommunications, utilities, banking and finance have expressed interest in MyInfo.

  • How MyInfo works

  • MyInfo is an e-citizen service that lets users save time on online form filling and transactions by automatically filling out government e-forms.

    It is accessed through SingPass, initially through voluntary enrolment. GovTech announced in September that all 3.3 million SingPass users will be enrolled in MyInfo by the end of the year.

    Tied to their MyInfo accounts is government-verified data such as names, NRIC numbers and addresses, pulled from various public agencies.

    When users have to fill in an online form from participating e-government services - such as when applying for a new flat - they can click on a Retrieve MyInfo button on the form to automatically populate it with data from the profile.

    This means users have to provide personal data only once to the Government, instead of repeatedly doing so for every online transaction. Next year, approved local businesses will be able to integrate MyInfo into their own e-services and apps.

    When users click on the data retrieval button, the service redirects them to log in with SingPass and pull data from MyInfo. They will also be asked for their consent to share data with the companies to protect their privacy. If they do not give consent, they can fill up the form manually and submit the requested supporting documents.

    Lester Hio

The move follows a MyInfo pilot with four banks - OCBC Bank, United Overseas Bank, DBS Bank and Standard Chartered - in May, which did away with the need for users to submit supporting documents when opening new bank accounts or applying for credit cards.

Four more - Citibank, HSBC Bank, Maybank and American Express - will be on board by the first quarter of next year.

GovTech's government chief information officer Chan Cheow Hoe said: "With MyInfo made available to a wider range of business transactions, we can help remove the need to verify documents, and even reduce time spent on face-to-face meetings." This significantly improves business efficiency as companies can get their customers on board more quickly, he added.

The agency added that as the security and privacy of citizen data is the key priority, businesses will have to seek consent from customers at the point of every transaction before any data is added for their use.

The developer portal, for coders to develop applications and services to integrate with MyInfo, opened yesterday.

Businesses that want to sign up for this integration can start doing so next month by using their CorpPass to log in to the portal. They will be considered on a case-by-case basis, such as whether there is compliance with the Personal Data Protection Act and whether they are requesting relevant data for their business use.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 11, 2017, with the headline 'Fill in e-transaction forms with less hassle soon'. Print Edition | Subscribe