Monthly Archives: November 2018

Letters from the President: Exploring Digital Government at FWD50

“When we set out to choose the topics of FWD50 2018, one thing was clear to us: We should begin with foundations, and there’s nothing more foundational than identity. Without it, we can’t ensure the right services are delivered to the right people, or track outcomes and usage in order to improve those services. But identity is challenging—almost philosophical: Who are we, really? And how do privacy, ease of use, and the handling of risk dictate how stringently we identify others?”

-Alistair Croll, Co-founder and content chair, FWD50

On November 7-9, digital government leaders from more than 15 countries gathered in Ottawa, Ontario for the FWD50 conference. “Use technology to make society better for all” was the theme of this year’s event, and conversation focused on government tech, connected citizens, digital policy and the future of society. The conference, now in its second year, has become an event in which DIACC is pleased to participate by contributing our community’s leadership to help foster and drive meaningful conversations. The three-day conversation on digital transformation brings together citizens, the public service, elected officials, technologists, and innovative thinkers from across the globe. The conference encourages governments to think big, in terms of going digital.  

For the first day, before sessions began, DIACC was asked to provide an ‘Identity 101 session’, (Who Goes There? Demystifying Digital Identity for all). This was to give people get an idea about what identity is and what it means. DIACC held a similar workshop last year, which was well-attended. Whereas last year’s identity overview was 30 minutes in duration, this year’s was three hours long, due to popular demand. The workshop was so well attended that at points it was standing-room-only, which spoke to people wanting to learn more about identity.

Ahead of this year’s conference, organizers engaged attendees to find out what topics would be most interesting for the audience. Digital identity was a clear leading topic that people wanted to learn more about.

During the first half of the workshop, Tim Bouma, Senior Policy Analyst Identity Management, Treasury Board Secretariat, provided an overview the need for digital identity from the federal Government’s perspective. Then I widened the discussion to explain the impact of digital identity on Canada’s economy, as well as the power of public and private sector collaboration. For example, DIACC posits that Canada’s economy loses at least 15 Billion dollars in potential annually by not solving for digital identity.  

We were also thrilled to have two guest speakers join us. Santiago Paz, Information Security Director at AGESIC Uruguay, discussed how identity works in Uruguay. Aurélie Pols, who is a French Dutch national that lives in Spain, spoke about the GDPR and what privacy and consent means in a broader context.

After providing some baseline materials, we broke out into an unconference for the second session. Topics included: identity proofing, organizational identity, amplifying collaboration, and categorization of types of consent.

On the second day of the conference I was proud to moderate a circlesquare panel session, which is an interactive unconference-style panel where participants move every 25 minutes. Thematic conversations centered on the need to provide Canadians with tools and agency to make decisions about information sharing. There was a recognition that identity is an enabler and is something that we need to solve.

The tone of the conversations were clear – It’s time to empower Canadians to help them to know what kind of identity information exists about them and to provide them with tools to manage that information.

Next steps

DIACC is committed to helping governments to define their role in the broad collaboration that is needed to solve for digital identity. Canadians need government issued evidence of identity that they can use both in government contexts as well as in the dynamic digital economy.

Government issued evidence of identity has value that is not fully realized when that evidence of identity is confined to the paper world.  It’s important for governments to start preparing themselves to issue evidence of digital identity – for example, digital driver’s licenses and birth records.

By governments making the transition to issue digital evidence of identity that citizens can use in their daily lives, governments will have the ability to create the legal foundation for identity online. This will help every Canadian to gain better access to social services as well as to grow Canada’s digital economy opportunities and our economic opportunities at large.

DIACC’s role

We realize that solving for digital identity is easier said than done, and there are going to be challenges along the way. The good news is that the digital transformation challenge is not something that governments need to face alone. These conversations illuminate areas where DIACC needs to take a lead.

With close to 60 members from around the world, we are investing in Canadian identity, and have been for the last number of years. That’s a strong indicator that Canada’s public and private sectors are invested and here to make identity work for all Canadians at home and on the global scale.

DIACC is the place where the public and private sector are making a significant and sustained investment to develop and deliver the Pan Canadian Trust Framework, which is a set of standards and practices to guide digital identity in Canada. Its success depends on the investments and strong collaboration of public and private sector for the benefit of all Canadians.

To learn more about how your organization can invest in Canada’s digital identity needs, please contact us.

Spotlight on Ingenico

Meet Ingenico

  1. What is the mission and vision of Ingenico? 

Ingenico’s mission is to bring the same level of security, privacy and trust to the identity market that is found in today’s payment industry. Ingenico envisions a future where a single point of interaction can enable both an identity confirmation and payment approval.

2. Why is trustworthy digital identity critical for existing and emerging markets? 

A trustworthy digital identity is critical for all markets, both emerging and mature, as it provides a recognized authentication step in the path towards secure digital interactions between consumers and merchants.

Once trust between merchant and consumer is established, the resulting transactions are both seamless and personalized. Ecommerce, selling of controlled substances, home delivery and even loyalty can be enabled to a greater degree of sophistication once identity has been established.

3. How will digital identity transform the Canadian and global economy? How does Ingenico address challenges associated with this transformation?

A robust digital identity can transform the Canadian and global economy to the benefit of all. The most noticeable impact will be in reducing ecommerce fraud, identity theft and healthcare fraud. In addition, governments will not have to carry the cost burden associated with the creation and maintenance of expensive physical identity cards.

Ingenico is well positioned to be a leader during this transformation. Ingenico has already participated in the digitization of an entire industry as a key contributor during Canada’s move towards a cashless society. The experiences and lessons we learned through that process can help ease the transformation that digital identity will go through in the coming years.

4.  What role does Canada have to play as a leader in the space?

Canada is well positioned to see the transformation of identity into a digital format. Canadians are digitally savvy, willing to accept new trends and have the necessary infrastructure in place to promote such a transformation. In fact, Canada is currently ranked the most cashless society in the world. This is a key indicator confirming that Canadians will quickly adopt additional digital transformations nationally. The existence of DIACC itself, with such diverse membership between public and private organizations, is a testament to the leadership Canada is providing the industry globally.   

5. Why did Ingenico join the DIACC?

There are numerous synergies between the Identity and Payments industry. A fraudulent breach in either market automatically removes trust from the marketplace. If digital identity is not trusted, it will not be used.

It took decades for the payment industry to develop this consumer trust and we believe Ingenico can bring our experiences as a trusted point of interaction to the DIACC community.

DIACC is poised to shape the future of the identity industry in Canada and beyond. Ingenico wants to ensure that our expertise with both security and privacy, across a massive global footprint of trusted points of digital interaction, is shared with the membership.

6.  What else should we know about Ingenico?

Ingenico has been a leader in the payment industry for more than 38 years, empowering commerce across any channel whether it is online, in-store or mobile.  In Canada, Ingenico has a large majority of the Canadian terminal market share and an ever-growing share of the Canadian ecommerce market. Our secure points of interaction are used by Canadians every moment of every day and will be an ideal launch pad for digital identity usage.

Ingenico is also a major player in Identity in Europe. Ingenico’s Healthcare and eID vertical is already on its fourth generation of hardware supporting pharmacy, healthcare and secured public sector work stations in France and Germany. Our identity solutions, experience and expertise can help fast track DIACC’s mandate.