Written Replies to Parliamentary Questions

Written Reply to Parliamentary Question on Allowing Residents Whose NRICs Have Been Stolen Due to Third Party Data Breaches To Replace Their NRIC at a Nominal or Discounted Replacement Fee, by Mr K Shanmugam, Minister for Home Affairs and Minister for Law

Published: 05 October 2021


Mr Chua Kheng Wee Louis: To ask the Minister for Home Affairs whether the Ministry will consider allowing residents whose NRICs have been stolen as a result of third party data breaches to replace their NRIC at a nominal or discounted replacement fee.


1.   An individual’s NRIC number is a unique and permanent identifier used in many transactions and documents throughout the individual’s life. Therefore, the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) does not allow an individual to change his or her NRIC number, even if the number had been stolen during a data breach incident.

2.   There are measures in places to prevent and mitigate the risk of subsequent identity theft, especially for financial transactions and sensitive transactions with public agencies. These include the use of additional information for identity verification, such as one-time passwords, personal identification numbers, and biometrics.

3.   Residents who have lost their physical NRIC have to apply to ICA for a replacement NRIC. ICA takes into consideration the reason for the loss of the NRIC in considering waivers of the replacement fee.