Hong Kong's Smart Identity Card Judged Best Introduced Worldwide

PCCW's World Class IT Services Recognized at International Conference

HONG KONG, May 31, 2004 - Card Technology Magazine, the leading US-based international publication promoting the adoption of advanced smart card technologies, has presented the Government of the Hong Kong SAR Immigration Department the award for Breakthrough Implementation for introduction of the territory’s Smart Identity Card System.

The Department’s efforts were recognized by a selected judging panel of international experts, and the honor was presented in April at the “Annual Breakthrough Awards” for the SMARTICS during the Card Technology & Security Technology (CTST) 14th Annual Conference and Exhibition, held in Washington DC. The award was received by Mr. T.K. Lai, Director and Mr. Raymond Wong, Assistant Director (Information Systems) of the Immigration Department, Government of the HKSAR.

Speaking at the awards ceremony, Mr T.K Lai, said, “It is my great pleasure to receive this award and the honor should go to the people of Hong Kong. It is a complex and time critical project using various state-of-the-art technologies. Our colleagues and all the vendors had worked day and night for a total of 18 months, which results in a successful implementation. The card lays the foundation for a range of future applications and services and in this way it becomes more than just an identity card”.

Hong Kong successfully rolled out the Smart Identity card in June 2003, with the backing of PCCW’s IT service division, Unihub.

As the prime contractor and system integrator, PCCW led an international consortium, which involves 10 subcontractors to provide computer-encrypted smart cards to the Government of the Hong Kong SAR. PCCW is also responsible for the provision of hardware, software and related services for the implementation of the highly sophisticated and state-of-the-art platform.

Because of the complexity of SMARTICS and stringent requirements on data privacy and data security, high emphasis was placed on Unihub’s ability to design and build such a top quality and efficient smart-card solution by integrating advanced technologies from around the world.

Despite a tight schedule, the importance and impact of developing the project in line with the Immigration Department’s overall Information System Strategy (ISS), was a key incentive leading Unihub, together with the dedicated Immigration project team and its management, to deliver the project within the agreed timeline and budget.

The award from Card Technology Magazine further reinforces Unihub’s world class capabilities, and the excellence of the 100 member professional IT team which supported this project through each phase, from project management, system development and engineering to operations and related services.

Thomas Siu, Managing Director of Unihub in Hong Kong, said, “ We are honored to be the Immigration Department’s chosen partner for the SMARTICS project. Delivering such a large-scale, complex project was not an easy task, and we succeeded only because of the strong support from the very professional team at the Immigration Department. This is a clear demonstration of our commitment to provide the highest quality service to our partners and to help them fulfill their mission.”