The UK government has launched a consultation towards its latest plans for digital identity. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) aims to gather viewpoints from interested parties towards proposals of making digital identities trusted and secure like official documents.
Establishing the Trust Mark
Following on from the publication of a draft digital identity and attributes trust framework in February, the consultation follows towards a second iteration of the framework expected to be released shortly.
Under the plan laid out, a governing body is to be established to oversee regulation and certification of digital identity providers, providing them with a trust mark to showcase conformance to the framework. Organizations showcasing a trust mark will be permitted to undertake digital checks against government-held data.
A pilot scheme was initiated last year for checking passport data. With this framework model, the plan is for making a wider range of datasets available, with a separate aim of digitising birth certificates as an alternative.
ID for All
The government data will not be accessible to third parties, and checks will likely take the form of simple yes/no verification. Legislation is being worked on to provide digital identities equal legal status as physical documents. Proposals have also been drawn up to include measures allowing those with insufficient digital footprint to be able to create one via the use of physical documents, which goes a long way towards last year’s problems affecting the £200m Gov.UK Verify DI system.
With Verify being phased out in preparation for this new system, the aim is for people to feel assured that an app in their pocket can be trusted as much as their passport or driving licence when identification is required.
Building for the Future
This technology is viewed as a vital building block for the economy and the future, with assurances set to make people understand that their data is being used and handled safely and securely. Digital identities make for easier, quicker and more security checks in helping people without traditional forms of ID prove who they are.
The plan is for an existing regulatory body to take responsibility for the governance of the market rather than creating a new body. Accreditation is not set to be mandatory for digital identity providers, but firms will not be granted access to government datasets if they do not take part.