Action is needed on digital IDs

  • techUK techUK
    Tuesday05Mar 2019
    Opinions

    Ruth Milligan, Head of Financial Services & Payments at techUK, explains why the UK needs to act now on digital identities.

Ruth Milligan, Head of Financial Services & Payments at techUK, explains why the UK needs to act now to put fully-funtioning digital identities in place.

As a report from the National Audit Office has found, there are problems with the UK's digital identity scheme, Verify. The report published on 5 March, found that Verify is not widely used, has been very costly and, in any event, it only covers 19 public sector services. techUK takes the strong view that the UK urgently needs to look to the future and develop a framework which makes secure digital identities widely available across both the public and private sectors. 

An interoperable set of standards for secure digital IDs, which can span both public and private sectors, would enable UK citizens and businesses to access all of their digital lives in a simple and secure way. As argued in the techUK White Paper, The Case for Digital IDs, secure digital identities are an essential key to unlocking the value and reaping the full benefits of online services in the digital economy. Such a framework will enable new services to be made available in a competitive market, secure against fraud, allow connectivity among digital services and greatly contribute to the economy as a whole.

A set of standards is needed which uses the latest and most innovative solutions, including biometric and facial recognition technologies. In our view, this would best be done by using private sector expertise in a collaborative way. The UK has highly innovative companies with very secure and simple sign-in processes for digital ID. We should be making the most of this expertise to enable a market to develop, which provides identities suitable to the myriad use-cases, from proof of age to acessing financial services.

There will be difficulties to be overcome: we must cater for different types of identity - risk profiles depend on what an identity is used for and there are layers of verification requirements in different instances. Trust in the solutions will be crucial and therefore a robust liability model with dispute resolution will also be needed. But industry groups are already working to this end and these complexities can be overcome. The willingness and enthusiasm from private sector companies is there and the UK has the know-how to make it happen. What is now needed is a clear policy lead from Government to bring stakeholders together and kick-start a collaborative process. In our aspirations to build a digital economy, we must act now on digital IDs, or risk falling behind.

  • Ruth Milligan

    Ruth Milligan

    Head of Programme | Financial Services and Payments
    T 020 7331 2173

Share this

FROM SOCIAL MEDIA

Thanks to everyone who joined us for a great day of lively discussion at #techUKSmarterState. Here's @techUKCEO's t… https://t.co/dozbHIUEj7
A big thank you to the @techuk crew for making this year's event a success! #techUKSmarterState https://t.co/bumOuzwUu5
A massive thank you to all our sponsors and partners this year! #techUKSmarterState https://t.co/gDlHHNurUe
. @ChannelSwimSue wraps it up here. What an amazing event it has been. Thanks you all for coming this year's event.… https://t.co/Z5LBf0Kbxo
What a way to finish #techUKSmarterState with Dr. Nina Cope from @NCA_UK. Fantastic insight from deep expertise in… https://t.co/epBYOUp3vA
Final question from the audience on the role of automation in public safety, particularly as a tool to protect offi… https://t.co/XCRv593I0m
"What we need from industry is to understand the scale of the issues, understand the importance and consequence of… https://t.co/0qEQSTiIkK
Question from the audience "How can we deal with the challenge of boundless tech going forward? How can we deal wit… https://t.co/hohjrblY24
Become a Member
×

Become a techUK Member

By becoming a techUK member we will help you grow through:

Click here to learn more...