Person identification number

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The personal identification number ( PKZ ) was introduced in the GDR on January 1, 1970. Associated with this was the establishment of the central personal database from 1972 in Berlin-Biesdorf. The task of the database, which was fully functional from 1984, was to collect and save personal data from the Central Office for Personal Affairs.

All citizens of the GDR and foreigners who stayed in the GDR for more than six months and who had a residence permit were given a personal identification number. Starting in 1970, the personal identification number of newborns was assigned by the registry offices for entry in the birth certificate and civil status register. The passport and registration departments of the People's Police District Offices were responsible for the retrospective allocation of the personal identification number and its entry in identity cards and passports . All people born before 1970 without a personal identification number received this by postcard from 1973 onwards.

State administrations used personal identification numbers to uniquely encode the person and entered them in the social security and vaccination cards for children and young people and for adults, in the military service card and in the pension card. With today's inquiries to the Federal Commissioner for the Stasi records , the voluntary specification of the PKZ from GDR times makes it easier to find and assign file processes.

Other countries

In Austria and Sweden there are personal identification systems that are very similar to that of the GDR. In both countries, the clear identification of each person resulted in a considerable reduction in administrative work. The social security number in the USA, the "TC Kimlik No." ( Citizen Identification Number ) in Turkey , or the "PESEL" number (Electronic Personal Register Number) in Poland have a similar function .


The twelve-digit personal code of the GDR was structured as follows:



  • TT : birthday
  • MM : month of birth
  • YY : year of birth (two digits)
  • G : Century of birth and gender
    • 2 : male, born before 1900
    • 3 : female, born before 1900
    • 4 : male born after 1900
    • 5 : female, born after 1900
  • MMM : key number of the registering register, for those born before 1970 the key number of the registration office of the place of residence was used
  • N : Consecutive number within the birthday
  • P : Check digit for checking

The twelve-digit personal identification number of the Federal Republic was planned as follows:



  • TT : birthday
  • MM : month of birth
  • YY : year of birth (two digits)
  • G : Century of birth and gender
  • MMMM : Serial number used to distinguish people of the same sex who were born on the same day.
  • P : Check digit for checking

For the history see also: Reich personnel number


  • Ingrid Oertel: The resident data memories of the local government bodies (EDS) and their use in the health and social services of the GDR. In: Historical Social Research / Historische Sozialforschung , 32 (2007) H. 1, pp. 271–304, urn : nbn: de: 0168-ssoar-62562 .
  • Wilhelm Steinmüller : IT and law. Introduction to legal informatics. Schweitzer, Berlin 1970, p. 78.

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. 5th Government of the GDR, 95th meeting of the Presidium of the Council of Ministers on October 15, 1969: Resolution on measures to introduce a uniform personal identification number for all people living in the GDR , Federal Archives, DC 20-I / 4/2070.
  2. 6. Government of the GDR, 36th meeting of the Presidium of the Council of Ministers on October 11, 1972: Resolution on the establishment and management of the GDR's personal database , Federal Archives, DC 20-I / 4/2739.
  3. Answer to small question from the parliamentary groups of the SPD, FDP - printed matter VI / 554 . (PDF) German Bundestag, 6th electoral term, printed matter VI / 598 of April 1, 1970, p. 3