Malaysian Authorities Prepare Biometric Identification for Foreign Workers’ Medical Screening

Authorities in Malaysia are preparing to implement a biometric identification system for medical screenings of foreign workers.

Malaysian Authorities Prepare Biometric Identification for Foreign Workers' Medical ScreeningThe system is designed to scan subjects’ thumbprints, and to then compare the biometric data against records held by the Malaysian Immigration System, ensuring that foreign workers are who they say they are when undergoing medical screening. In a press conference announcing the system, the country’s Immigration director-general, Datuk Seri Mustafar Ali, said his department had “identified a percentage of foreign workers who have attempted to fake their medical screenings by getting healthier individuals to take it in their stead,” and suggested that the introduction of the biometric screening system reflects the seriousness with which government authorities are addressing the matter. He also added that 2.6 percent of the more than 400,000 foreign workers who came to Malaysia last year failed their medical exams, leading to their disbarment from working in the country.

The move appears to point to a growing interest in biometric identification on the part of the Malaysian government, which recently suggested that it is considering biometric registration for refugees to the country as a means of weeding out potential Islamic State terrorists.

The biometric identification system for the medical screening of foreign workers is scheduled to go into action starting this October.

Sources: Free Malaysia Today, New Straits Times, The Star Online

August 1, 2017 – by Alex Perala