National digital identity framework prototype only weeks away


A new federated national digital identity framework is coming in 2017. It will accommodate smaller agencies and won’t be dominated by the big federal players, says the project’s leader.

The Digital Transformation Office will release details of how it plans to build a national proof-of-identity system that doesn’t require an exchange of much personal information at the end of this month.

The DTO’s digital identity team, led by Rachel Dixon, will publish details of its alpha prototype on August 29, and take it on the road to explain the plan for a “double-blind” system to communities around Australia. The roadshow program will no doubt involve explaining over and over that this is not another example of the government collecting, linking up and storing information on its citizens.

As part of the August 29 alpha launch, the DTO will publish draft open standards to replace the existing national identity proofing guidelines. The beta version, which the public will be able to use, is expected to emerge about halfway through 2017, Dixon told the Technology in Government conference last week. [Update, August 26: the alpha release will not happen on August 29.]

Fun for the whole federation

She said the aim was to create a “genuinely whole-of-government” digital identity solution that could link together with existing identity credentials from business and agencies of federal or state governments.

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