The Civil Status and Passport Department (CSPD) has successfully implemented a pioneering Citizen Information System using the latest Microsoft technologies, enabling more efficient sharing of information between government entities, and making the CSPD the first Jordanian governmental department to have the ability to exchange sensitive data with non-governmental organizations securely and instantly.
In partnership with Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, CSPD deployed a Microsoft solution through Specialized Technical Services (STS), a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner, which allows the agency to provide efficient data online within seconds compared to three days previously, and saves up to 20 hours a week by eliminating manual data processing tasks.
Loie Shyab, Associate IT Director at CSPD, said, “We are proud to have achieved these goals. It is a win-win situation for all parties—employees save time, customers don’t have to travel to CSPD offices and the government earns more revenue through the data access and utilization subscription fees from users.”
Mamoon Sanabra, Project Manager at CSPD, stated, “Microsoft solutions are technology-independent and easily integrate with the systems used by other government departments. Using Microsoft products, we did not have to replace any existing systems and could protect our previous technology investments.” He added, “It was also very cost effective. With the existing Enterprise Agreement for low-cost volume licensing between Microsoft and the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology, we did not have to buy any new software licenses.”
Highlighting the importance of this partnership and the major role it will play in the IT sector, especially in regards to the performance of the public sector, Zeid Shubailat, Country Manager of Microsoft Jordan, stated, “This project is a result of the strategic partnership agreement signed in 2003 between the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology (MoICT) and Microsoft, which was renewed last year and extended to 2009, at a cost of US$ 8.7 million.”
Shubailat went on to say, “According to the agreement, Microsoft offers public sector entities a substantial discount of up to 65% on various Microsoft product licenses, in addition to providing employees with the necessary training to enhance their performance, and technical support for various governmental entities”.
Ihsan Anabtawi, Marketing Manager of Microsoft Jordan, said, “This project reflects Microsoft’s continuous efforts to assist both the private and public sector to enhance their performance and provide Jordanians with better and more efficient services. We are delighted that the latest Microsoft technologies have been used to implement this project and look forward to continuing to provide our customers with state of the art solutions.”
The CSPD manages records of more than 10 million citizens and it needs to provide this data securely and in a timely manner to other government departments and external organizations, such as Jordanian embassies across the world, public utility services providers, financial institutions, in addition to other governmental agencies including the Statistics Department and the Judicial court that use the information to verify citizens’ identities.
"Contributing to CSPD’s continued growth as a highly professional and efficient entity conforms to our ultimate objective of empowering private and public sector organizations with the necessary tools to improve efficiency and provide a quality service. Having successfully launched this project further demonstrates our commitment to implementing advanced and state of the art solution that will benefit all parties concerned,” concluded Ramzi Zeine, STS Executive Chairman.
Dr. Nabeel Al Fayoumi, Director, Microsoft Solutions and Services at STS, said, “The core technology deployed by CSPD is Microsoft BizTalk Server 2006 Enterprise Edition, which seamlessly integrates all existing systems by extracting information from the organization’s database, automatically replicating it on an intermediate server and then publishing it on the portal”.
The CSPD also deployed Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 to allow government and non-government organizations to access citizens’ data online by logging on to the portal with a user name and passport provided by CSPD. Microsoft SQL Server 2005 stores all the data used by the portal and manages data-access privileges to users. While, Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 Standard Edition delivers features such as search and user registration.
To fulfill the data security requirements, CSPD implemented Microsoft Information and Security Acceleration Server 2006 Enterprise Edition and Microsoft Forefront Security for SharePoint.
The Kingdom of Jordan has recently accelerated its drive to integrate information and communications technology in all areas of government operations, and is fast becoming a mature information society. A clear indicator to support this fact is that 95% of its government ministries now have Websites providing citizens with access to information and online transactional services.