SingPass is Going to ‘Upgrade’ & It Can Replace Our NRIC for More Transactions in the Future

If you’ve never bothered to protect your SingPass properly, you might want to consider doing so now.

Because in the near future, your SingPass is going to be as powderful as your NRIC.

Singpass is Going to Upgrade to Become Our NRIC in the Future

According to a Straits Times report, SingPass is undergoing an “extensive upgrade” that’ll allow it to be used for “high-risk online transactions”.

Reader Bao: Like booking IPPT?

No lah, that is already allowed even though its the highest risk online transaction ever.

We’re talking about things like opening new bank accounts, transferring or withdrawing funds.

Basically, it’s going to be used for stuff that normally, you’ll need your NRIC to do.

Recently, OCBC and DBS have started to allow users to access their mobile and online banking services and functions with their SingPass.

Beefing Up SingPass Security

GovTech, the father of SingPass, is now looking for a contractor to help beef up SingPass’s security.

They want to build real-time fraud detection capabilities into the system which can detect (and prevent) identity thefts and account takeover attempts (read: hacking).

Given how normal people like you and me who tends to go into dangerous websites and click on dangerous URLs all the time, a function like that is greatly appreciated.

Some unusual activities include:

  • Use of Virtual Private Networks (VPN) to mask a person’s identity and 3rd-party apps
  • Bot-initiated logins
  • The presence of malware
  • Prediction of unauthorised device usage by monitoring and detecting “subtle discrepancies” in user behaviour (and this is the cool part, they can do so by detecting the difference in hand swipe or touch pressure)

To do so, they will be moving away from “scripted fraud detection” to using machine learning and A.I.

Don’t understand what talking them? Well, of course you don’t unless you’re a programmer. And even though Goody Feed’s interest is in simplifying chim stuff, we’re not going to do so here because we catch no ball too so as not bore you to death.

So, how does it work then?

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A Single Digital Identity

According to GovTech, Singapore is “developing a National Digital Identity ecosystem” and users will have a single digital identity for transactions, both with the “public and private sector”.

With the focus on security, people will remain safe and more private sector services will come onboard.

I mean, the entire reason why OCBC and DBS will allow alternative login via SingPass for users is that they deem the system to be secure enough, right?

Here’s what they say about the new SingPass:

It’ll be more flexible (in use) and more powerful than the pink NRIC when it comes to verifying online and over-the-counter transactions.

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SingPass Already Replacing NRIC

The SingPass Mobile app was launched in late 2018 and already, it’s replacing the NRIC in some instances.

The app allows users to store their NRIC barcode and other personal details in one place, such as your driver’s licence number, marriage certificate number, CPF records, etc.


They can authorise transactions over $10,000 by scanning their faces with their phones with a new service called SingPass Face Verification, which is being beta-ed by DBS bank.

In the future, people will be able to open a bank account by scanning their faces with their phones.

No more going to the bank and waiting in line; and if Covid-19 is still around, queueing up outside the branch under the hot sun.

Now, how cool is that?

And if you’re reading this article in 2030 and are wondering what an NRIC is, here’s a video about the retro card that we people in 2020 used to use (and if YouTube still exists in 2030, please subscribe to our YouTube channel, please?):


This Singapore love story set in the 90s shows you why you should never wait for tomorrow. Watch it without crying:

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