Bureaucratic backlogs and infuriating backlogs could soon be a thing of the past at Gauteng licensing centres as its vehicle registration system, which could save millions each year, prepares to go cyber.

Bureaucratic backlogs and infuriating backlogs could soon be a thing of the past at Gauteng licensing centres as its vehicle registration system, that could save millions each year, prepares to go cyber.

CARtoday.com reported last month that learners’ and drivers’ licence test procedures were given a thorough shake-up when it emerged that some driving schools had been making block bookings and creating huge backlogs.

As part of the restructuring, the transport department established five temporary call centres to shorten the time between when a booking was made and when the learner licence or driving test was taken. Members of the public were instructed to phone a number, present their identification and learner licence numbers, and book a time and venue for their tests. Each caller was then given a reference number to present at the testing station as validation of the booking.

In another step, starting next month a new online vehicle registration system will be introduced at Gauteng and promises to reduce the time taken to register new vehicles and save the car industry millions of rands every year.

A joint venture between the transport department and Business Against Crime (BAC), this system will enable vehicle dealers to submit registration details online. The system has been piloted over the past 18 months and will eliminate staff having to queue for hours at the licensing centres.

The current system takes about four to six days, whereas the new system takes six hours.

Graham Wright, the head of the organised crime division at BAC, said the online system would reduce the risk of fraud as vehicle-related crime remained pivotal in organised crime.

"Vehicle crime syndicates have become so sophisticated that they have on occasion rented offices and employed staff to answer incoming telephone inquiries in order to illicitly acquire vehicles," Wright told the .

Paul Hutton of motoronline, the company that conducted the pilot, said more than 4 000 vehicles had been registered over the period. An average of six hours was needed per transaction with no fraudulent applications being recorded.

Dealers had also been using runners to take documents to the licensing centres. Gary McGraw, director of the Retail Motor Industry, said with the online transaction this could be totally excluded, further reducing the risk of fraud.

Another major spin-off, Wright said, would be that vehicle dealers would receive payment from financial institutions sooner.

Original article from Car