is a unique national identification number
A national identification number, national identity number, or national insurance number is used by the governments of many countries as a means of tracking their citizens, permanent residents, and temporary residents for the purposes of work, taxation, government benefits, health care, and other...
used by the Icelandic government to identify individuals and organisations in Iceland
Iceland , described as the Republic of Iceland, is a Nordic and European island country in the North Atlantic Ocean, on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. Iceland also refers to the main island of the country, which contains almost all the population and almost all the land area. The country has a population...
, administered by the National Registry (Þjóðskrá
are issued to Icelandic citizens at birth, and to foreign nationals resident in Iceland upon registration. They are also issued to corporations and institutions.
are composed of ten digits. For a personal kennitala
, the first six of these are the individual's date of birth in the format DDMMYY. The seventh and eighth digits are randomly chosen when the kennitala
is allocated, the ninth is a check digit
A check digit is a form of redundancy check used for error detection, the decimal equivalent of a binary checksum. It consists of a single digit computed from the other digits in the message....
, and the tenth indicates the century of the individual's birth: '9' for 1900–1999, '0' for 2000 and beyond. Kennitölur
are often written with a hyphen
The hyphen is a punctuation mark used to join words and to separate syllables of a single word. The use of hyphens is called hyphenation. The hyphen should not be confused with dashes , which are longer and have different uses, or with the minus sign which is also longer...
following the first six digits, e.g. 120174-3389.
The system is similar to that employed by some other European countries, but Iceland makes unusually extensive and public use of its kennitölur
, with businesses and educational institutions eschewing internal identification numbers in favour of the national system, and its use being mandated in banking transactions. Furthermore, online banking services in Iceland offer a lookup service to check names against numbers. Because of their public nature, kennitölur
are not used for authentication
Authentication is the act of confirming the truth of an attribute of a datum or entity...
. The completeness of Iceland's National Register has eliminated the need for country to conduct a regular census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...
: population statistics can be obtained by simply querying the database.
New link: http://search.cpan.org/dist/Business-IS-PIN-0.06/lib/Business/IS/PIN.pm A Perl module
A Perl module is a discrete component of software for the Perl programming language. Technically, it is a particular set of conventions for using Perl's package mechanism that has become universally adopted....
for validating and processing kennitölur
- Ian Watson, "A short history of national identification numbering in Iceland," Bifröst Journal of Social Science 4 (2010), pp. 51-89, http://bjss.bifrost.is/index.php/bjss/article/view/63/65