07 Nov 2020

Saudi Ministry of Interior & Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority Highlight Several Digital Transformation-Centered Infrastructure Solutions and Smart Initiatives

Ministry of Interior in KSA

In cooperatin with the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA), Saudi Ministry of Interior (MOI) is preparing to participate for the sixth year in GITEX Technology Week to be held in Dubai, 6-10 December 2020. Covering 750 sqm in Sheikh Saeed Hall, the event will highlight the latest technological innovations, systems and applications, as well as many smart initiatives supporting data-driven and AI-based digital transformation efforts, especially those adopted during the COVID-19 pandemic. The MOI is building on its previous successful engagements to confirm its distinguished presence in this year's edition of the event, during which it seeks to underscore its technological achievements realized in collaboration with SDAIA. During the exhibition, the ministry aims to introduce visitors to new versions of all smart applications and e-systems that played a pivotal role in developing procedures and optimizing services, such as Absher and Maidan platforms, as well as Tawakkalna App, developed by SDAIA as one of the most instrumental tools helping relevant authorities curb the pandemic. The application played a key role in managing the issuance of e-permits for movement during the curfew period, and enabling individuals to obtain the necessary permits in a seamless and safe manner; to be easily checked by security personnel in the field.

Absher - Developed to Serve You

In line with the digital transformation strategy consistent with the Saudi Vision 2030 aimed at enhancing performance, the Ministry of Interior utilizes its Absher platform to provide citizens, residents, visitors and businesses, with a wide range of services. The application provides a convenient and seamless environment for doing business, offering added-value digital platforms, as well as focusing on innovation as the main driver for the development process and digital transformation of the Ministry. Out of its commitment to provide its customers, including individuals and pubic and private sector entities with the latest digital services, Absher platform played an effective role during the COVID-19 pandemic, by reducing the number of visits required to security and service centers through the provision of high quality services to individuals, companies, institutions and government agencies via governing procedures, improving performance, strengthening Ministry-wide communication channels to save the time and effort of citizens, residents, visitors and businesses in the Kingdom. The platform includes over 200 e-services that benefit more than 17 million verified users. The Absher app saw 77 billion logins from individuals and companies during the pandemic, and provided them with the opportunity to fully benefit from the electronic services of the Ministry of Interior, through the implementation of services such as issuing and renewing residency permits, transferring services, issuing and revoking exit and return visas, transferring vehicle ownership, issuing authorization of vehicles, issuing a final exit visa, and completing the procedures for delivering documents executed through the platform according to the requirements and conditions of the service provider.

Harnessing Technology to Address Challenges - (Tawakkalna, Tabaud, and Broouq) for Protection against COVID-19

As organizations and software companies around the world are racing to develop digital applications capable of helping individuals reduce the risks of COVID-19 infection and providing medical recommendations on how to deal with suspected cases, and as part of its proactive measures translated into an integrated strategy that protect society against the virus, SDAIA launched Tawakkalna and Tabaud applications. The first application plays a major role in promoting safe return to normal life after lifting easing the precautionary measures, through a set of features that help prevent the spread of disease, in addition to contributing to the management of this year's Hajj by making Hajj permits available through the application.

On the other hand, the Tabaud application is a way to notify users who were in contact with people infected with coronavirus over the previous 14 days. The application leverages the latest technologies developed by Google and Apple, while maintaining the privacy of users and the confidentiality of their data. KSA was the third country in the world to utilizing these applications and technologies, which helped the relevant authorities, especially the Ministry of Health, in managing the COVID-19 crisis. Over 6 million users utilized the services provided by Tawakkalna App, to issue more than 33 million permits, while more than 50 government institution used the application. Tabaud, on the other hand, was used by over 3 million users.

As for the Broouq platform, it is a visual and secure communication platform, developed to enable government entities to hold their internal and external meetings remotely during the pandemic crisis. The tool was used to hold the first virtual summit of G20 leaders, as well as 200 other meetings, which saw the participation of more than 5353 people.

Innovating New Remote Services in Times of Crisis

As part of its endeavors to encourage and enrich the culture of creativity and innovation and harness technology to contribute to developing MOI e-services (Absher platform) and fieldwork, MOI cooperated with SDAIA and Elm company to launch the Absher Challenge (Absherthon), to submit local and international ideas and help improving existing services offered by the Ministry of Interior, either through improving its procedures or by adding new axes, including field services, and improving the experience of digital and field services users.The challenge also included developing new service for the ministry, whether to digitize a traditional existing service, or by submitting ideas for new services needed by individuals, businesses, or government entities. The competition also aims to enhance the performance of MOI staff to offer high quality services and ensure a better life for citizens and residents of the Kingdom, by utilizing modern technologies, such as AI, IoT, Big Data, Blockchain, and drones.

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