The much anticipated “My Number System” (Japan’s new national ID system) is now being implemented and concrete progress is expected by early 2014. This system aims to unify several different government data systems holding personal data.
However, the “My Number System” remains a work in progress and more work is required on the necessary legal and technical framework. Already certain guidelines have been issued by the government to make the transition into the new system more efficient.
For example, the prefectures have been divided based on their ability to support the system and support the cloud computing. Those who are ready to start now on cloud implementation are in Group 1. Others are in Group 2.
As far as technical issues are concerned, many governments in Group 2 are worried by the potentially high maintenance costs and security issues. Local governments are not uniformly supportive of the change, despite national requirements and deadlines to make the shift.
The “my number system” is a huge step forward to share knowledge and data nationwide and should be implemented as soon as possible. The challenges faced by the government, like location of the servers and the investment required, are just stepping stones to a better connected society where information would flow with ease.