Editorial

Digital Identity: Global Roundup

Digital identity news from around the world

Posted 27 November 2023 by Christine Horton


United Arab Emirates

Oz Forensics has launched Hybrid Oz Liveness Detection for Android and iOS devices. The solution merges on-device media analysis with server-based AI models, which the firm says sets new standards for biometric security and ensuring the accuracy in liveness detection.

In instances where the on-device liveness detection produces an outcome that raises doubts, the server seamlessly takes over and performs an additional analysis using its own AI models. Oz Forensics says this hybrid approach ensures that even in complex scenarios, the accuracy of liveness detection remains uncompromised.

Hungary

The Hungarian government has closed public comments on the country’s Digital Citizenship Law, a foundation for its Digital Citizenship Program (Digitális állampolgárság program, or DÁP). The final draft of the law is expected to be submitted to the parliament and enter into force on January 1, 2024.

According to the plan, digital IDs should be issued starting in September of that same year.

Hungary’s digital ID will allow citizens to prove their identity, settle payments to the state, handle administrative tasks and access public services through a tap on a mobile app.

Online identification will be provided through a state electronic identification service by matching the users’ facial images to a government database. Digital identification will be coupled with e-signatures. Fingerprint biometrics will also be collected from citizens during enrollment, according to an English translation of the draft law, via Biometric Update.

United Kingdom

London-based digital identity verification platform Magic ID has secured €350K in a pre-seed round of funding.

The investment was led by SFC Capital and Presto Ventures. The round saw €175K investment from SFC Capital, €120K from Presto Ventures and €55K from undisclosed angels.

Milan Lupac, Partner at Presto Ventures said: “I personally remember a number of instances when I did not have my passport or some other information on me, which prevented me from completing a KYC process. With Magic, there would be no such issue.”

“We believe the need for reusable identity will only grow as more and more businesses require verification. Even services where anonymity has been the default for a long time, such as social networks, are slowly gravitating towards verifying the majority of their users.”

Malaysia

Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has named an implementation agency for the country’s new digital identity programme. It has announced been announced that registrations for digital ID will begin next week across government, kickstarted with an allotment of RM80 million (approximately US$17 million).

First announced in late 2021, the Digital Identity Development Project (IDN) aims to secure a user-controlled biometric digital identification and verification system that matches an individual’s biometric data against a government database. Mimos Berhad, Malaysia’s national applied research and development center under the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, has been selected to implement the rollout, and is the recipient of the associated funding.

PM Anwar reportedly said the launch of the national digital ID program can happen is scheduled for three months’ time.

Luxembourg

Luxembourg will perform a series of pilot use cases of the EU’s proposed digital wallet spanning public and private sector applications, such as eGov services.

The proposal is led by the EU Commission which delegates use cases to the POTENTIAL Consortium (Pilots for European digital Identity wallet).

Over 26 months, countries will test the effectiveness if they launched their own digital wallet saving digital credentials onto their mobile device, which could open up easier digital banking services, eGov services, mobile driving licences and legally signed digital documents.

The Ministry for Digitalisation and the CTIE will participate in testing the national digital wallet against variables like speed and efficiency when verifying and onboarding a citizen to access government services.

The pilot will also scrutinise the benefit of having electronic driving licences integrated in the digital wallet to present to police forces or recognised by car rental agencies throughout Europe. The integration of a “Qualified eSignature” to sign digital documents that have legal value also serves the EU citizen wherever and however they want to transfer an e-document to a constituent like an employer.

Somalia

Somalia’s Cabinet Ministers have approved a draft civil registration and vital statistics (CRVS) legislation, a step towards modernising its citizen identification system.

Minister Ahmed Fiqi said the bill would empower local governments around the country to provide essential public services to citizens in a coordinated, seamless and secure manner.

The approval of the CRVS bills by the Somali Cabinet happened days after a delegation from the country made the trip to neighbouring Ethiopia to tap into its digital ID experience.

In a message posted to its Telegram channel, the National ID Program of Ethiopia (NIDP) said it had a “knowledge-sharing” discussion last week with some officials of Somalia’s National Identification and Registration Authority.

United Kingdom

OneID is partnering with e-signature specialist eID Easy, which it says combines its identity verification capabilities with the seamless and secure signing experience of eID Easy.

Switzerland

A new voluntary electronic identity (e-ID) scheme, overseen by the Swiss authorities, could be launched as early as 2026.

Almost three years after Swiss voters rejected a private e-ID scheme at the ballot box, the Federal Council has presented its proposal for the introduction of a state-run system. It now goes to parliament to be discussed, noted Swissinfo.ch

The e-ID will be voluntary and free of charge. All services provided by the authorities to use an e-ID would continue to be offered in a non-digital format or process. The federal authorities, cantons and communes would have to accept the e-ID when they conduct electronic identification, for example when issuing a confirmation of residence or a copy of a debt collection register. The e-ID may also be used in the physical world, for example in shops to prove someone’s age when buying alcohol.

According to the Federal Council’s plans, anyone who wants an e-ID has to download an app on their smartphone, scan a Swiss-issued ID document with a camera and upload a photograph. The Federal Office of Police (Fedpol) will then check the authenticity of the information which should not take longer than a few minutes, said Schöll.

Canada

Canadian digital identity firm Credivera has entered the last phase of testing before commercialisation under the Innovative Solutions Canada (ISC) program.

Shared Services Canada is conducting the test of Credivera’s open exchange for verifiable credentials in the workforce management and digital identity spaces. The platform, which stores up-to-date verifiable credentials in a digital wallet, is aimed at making it faster and easier for organisations and individuals to conduct digital transactions, as more industries adopt biometrics and digital ID for secure, interoperable, privacy-centric and tamper-proof authentication and verification.

Indonesia

The Ministry of Communication and Information, or Kominfo, has introduced a new policy on digital identity, which aims to give all citizens access to digital ID.

The ministry’s director general of informatics applications (APTIKA), Semuel Abrijani Pangerapan, explained that the policy aims to ensure public data security in the digital space.

He said the digital ID will be in the form of a unique number or algorithm that will be used for transactions in the digital space or to gain access to government services.

“In transactions, only we and the parties with whom we transact will know our data,” he said.

The digital ID, he added, is already being used in everyday activities, such as the use of digital signatures. The information stored in the digital ID will later be matched with the data registered with the government through civil registration, making it useful in the data verification process.

Europe / Canada

The EU and Canada have agreed to work together in areas such as artificial intelligence, secure international connectivity, cybersecurity, online platforms, digital identity and digital skills.

Among other things, the EU-Canada Digital Partnership will “exchange best practices on approaches to digital identity, data governance frameworks and data spaces.” It also aims to “develop closer cooperation through digital research and deployment programmes in the areas of supercomputing, artificial intelligence, cyber security, advanced digital skills, and digital identity and digital credentials.”

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