When news about Indonesian President Joko Widodo’s personal data leak broke, I knew I could no longer trust the government to protect our personal information. If the country’s most prominent figure fell victim to a data leak, then what about commoners like me? I was resigned to my fate as an Indonesian, living in a country where personal documents like ID cards (even the electronic version) and household registrations must be photocopied for administrative purposes. Every time you create an account in e-commerce apps, you’re required to provide your identification number, as well as a photo of you holding your ID card, to verify your identity. The risk of my identity being misused, whether to borrow money or to scam people, is inevitable.

Although I have given up on the situation, I’m still frustrated with spam messages that keep filling my inbox. Every day, at least one unknown number texts me to offer a loan, or to notify…

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