Editorial

Digital Identity: Global Roundup

Digital identity news from around the world

Posted 2 April 2024 by Christine Horton


Europe

Private equity firm Advent is looking to sell the European identity authentication business of Idemia as part of a breakup plan that will see each of the French biometrics company’s three units being sold separately, according to Bloomberg.

Advent is reportedly working with banks to launch an auction process in the coming weeks, said people with knowledge of the matter. They said the operation could be valued at up to €1 billion ($1.1 billion).

Idemia was split into Smart Identity, Public Security and Secure Transactions divisions earlier this year

United States

The General Services Administration has awarded eight blanket purchase agreements to identity proofing companies for its SSO portal Login.gov. The 10-year agreements for “next-generation identity proofing” are worth up to a total of $194.5 million combined.

The awardees are Experian, Idemia I&S, Carahsoft, LexisNexis, Aderas, Celerity, Diamond Capture Associates and TransUnion. The ordering period will run through March 14, 2034, but the purchase agreements do not obligate GSA to complete purchases with the selected providers.

It is reported that Login.gov has failed to meet identity verification requirements that meet NIST’s Identity Assurance Level 2 (IAL2) standard, which requires biometric comparison or in-person proofing. GSA has responded with plans to introduce face biometrics to Login.gov this year.

Kuwait

The Kuwait Interior Ministry says that all citizens and expats must register their biometric fingerprints before June 1. The country also plans to share the biometric data as part of a regional security network. Noncompliance with this security measure will result in restrictions on certain ministry services, including residence permit renewals and driver’s licence renewals, reports Biometric Update.

It is reported that about 35 percent (around 1.7 million) of the population have already completed their biometric fingerprint registration.

Europe

Nearly three years after the European Commission’s proposal, the EU Council has given the go-ahead to establish a digital wallet that is available and recognised in all member states.

The Regulation wants all people and businesses in the European Union to have universal access to secure and reliable electronic identification and authentication. Under the terms of the EU legislation, member states will have to offer digital wallets that can link national digital identities with proof of other personal attributes (driver’s licence, qualifications, bank account, health card), with the ability to prove identity and share electronic documents by using a smartphone. The new European digital identity (EDIW) wallets will enable all citizens to access online services with their national digital identification, which will be recognised in all other member countries.

United Kingdom

A UK government-endorsed ID card scheme is set to appoint Fujitsu as a business outsourcing supplier despite the Japanese company’s earlier promise to refrain from participating in UK public procurement, reports The Register.

The government is reportedly set to extend the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS) scheme to phone-based digital ID cards. Although the physical cards, which employ holograms, can come from a number of companies, a single company is expected to build the software to verify users through a smartphone app or barcode scanner.

The PASS scheme aims to offer proof of age for young people attempting to buy alcohol in the UK, where the legal age is 18. More controversially, the ID scheme is also used in elections, becoming one of the forms of ID allowing citizens to vote.

The contract, expected to be worth around £1 million.

United Kingdom

GOV.UK One Login has now been implemented across 30 discrete government services and registered almost four millions citizens as verified users.

The current list on GOV.UK names 17 services but, according to Cabinet Office minister baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe, this figure has already risen almost twofold, reports Public Technology.

“The GOV.UK One Login system is fully operational providing a simple and secure way for people to access government services online,” she said. “Users can create an account, login and prove (and then reuse) their identity – through either a web-based journey, smartphone app or in-person route – to access an initial set of 30 government services. This includes important services such as ‘Request a Disclosure and Barring Service Basic Check’ and ‘Apply for an HM Armed Forces Veteran Card’.”

United States, Canada, Spain, and Germany

GBG has expanded its mobile operator data coverage to include US, Canada, Spain, and Germany to help more businesses around the world combat identity fraud. Along with the addition of new territories, the digital identity firm continues to provide mobile intelligence coverage and expertise in the UK and France.

GBG’s mobile authentication solution helps organisations confirm a mobile identity is genuine as well as detect and flag mobile fraud signals in real-time. It said as a result, fraudsters can be more accurately identified at the point of onboarding, protecting businesses against costly origination fraud, while also monitoring for suspicious in-life customer behaviour.

United States

TransUnion has found that 13.5 percent of transactions associated with online account creation at the point of onboarding — were possibly fraudulent. The fraud was associated with account signup, registration and loan origination, and in the United States, digital fraud topped nearly five percent at account creation, at 4.8 percent.

In terms of the financial impact, the TransUnion study found that in the US — across auto loans, bank credit cards, retail credit card — exposure to those scams stood at more than $3 billion at the end of last year, up from $1.9 billion in the midst of the pandemic.

Belgium

Smart-ID, a mobile app facilitating digital identification and legal signatures, is launching in Belgium.

The Brussels Times reports the Estonian app is a competitor to Itsme, offering secure access to various everyday banking apps, government services and document management platforms.

Smart-ID is already a market leader in several Nordic countries, logging roughly one billion transactions in 2023.

In Belgium, Smart-ID has partnered with local company Trust1team, a provider of identification services for various Belgian and European banks, governments, and healthcare organisations as well as highly secure environments.

Don’t forget to register for Think Digital Identity and Cybersecurity for Government on June 11th.