The Philippine Statistics Authority’s Philippine Identification System on Friday encountered technical difficulties on the first day of online national ID registration.
In a statement on Friday, the PSA said that the influx of registrants during the pilot launch caused the technical difficulties.
“We received more than 40,000 registration requests during the first minutes of the pilot launch. This caused delays in the sending of the one-time passwords (OTPs) necessary to proceed with the registration,” the agency said.
“We are urgently looking into the issue and updating the website to resolve this technical challenge,” it added.
In a separate statement, the official page of the PhilSys also apologized for the inconvenience the technical difficulties caused.
“We are currently experiencing technical difficulties. Our technical team is currently figuring out the source of the problem. We will provide updates as soon as the website is up and running. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused,” it said.
This immediately drew some criticisms online, citing months of preparations and budget allotted for it.
“First day of online registration for National ID and your site is down. How convenient and prepared,” one user said.
“Why I am not surprised about how bad the preps were for something as important as a national ID system,” another user wrote.
“First it’s a tech error, now can’t send OTP. This activity was being prepared for months for how many millions of pesos? What happened? Okay guys, let’s give them a chance maybe they need to tweak the system,” another user commented.
Other Filipinos, however, said they have been expecting such technical woes.
“This is expected hindi lang naman 1,000 ang maglolog in or gagamit ng site. Tska magandang stress test to sa system para maayos yubg lapses and gaps. Dun sa mga nega dito sa comment, baka di pa nakakasubok ng system inplementation and stress test,” one user said.
“As expected, hindi kakayanin ang website traffic but this is a good start. Will wait for it to be fixed,” another user wrote.
To hype up the opening of the online registration, PhilSys held a countdown on its Facebook page in the past three days and regularly shared quote cards from public figures and other Filipinos about the benefits of a uniform ID system.
This program which was mandated under the Republic Act 11055 or the Philippine Identification System Act which aims to establish a single identification card or system to all citizens in the Philippines.
This will also replace over 46 existing government IDs to provide better convenience in transactions.
The pre-registration started in October 2020 where PSA personnel conducted house-to-house visits amid the still raging COVID-19 pandemic.
Such process also earned some backlash online, citing the national government’s questionable recording in protecting citizen’s data.