Frequently Asked Questions

What is digital ID?

Digital ID allows people and organizations to verify themselves online securely and protect personal information. Like a physical ID card, digital ID credentials typically include documents and cards such as driver’s licences and passports.

Good digital ID design enables data protection and personal control over how information is used and shared online. Digital ID is a choice. It is a supplemental tool for people and organizations to access online services.

What are the key principles of digital ID in Canada?

Establishing a good digital ID means establishing trust. In a digital environment, users must have full confidence, control, and ownership over their identity. This means:

  • Privacy. Security. Choice. These are the values at the core of the DIACC’s work on digital identity.
  • Having full protection over personal data with no user traceability.
  • Having the ability to use digital ID without worry of data breaches.
  • Having the choice to use privacy-enhancing, trusted digital identity tools to transact more efficiently and securely online.

The DIACC has been an active advocate to increase Canadians’ access to and control of data about them issued and held by both the public and private sector entities.

What are the benefits of digital ID for Canadians?

  • Digital ID is all about giving Canadians the choice and convenience to interact safely and conveniently online.
  • Digital ID offers a decentralized, privacy enhancing solution – neither government nor-private companies control your digital ID. How and when you use digital ID is entirely up to you.
  • Digital ID is designed to enhance Canadians’ experience as an option, not a requirement.
  • Digital ID will save manual operation costs and reduce fraud, saving an estimated $482 million for provincial and federal governments, and $4.5 billion for private sector organizations.

What makes the current Canadian approach [to Digital ID] different from others? 

  • Given Canada’s federal, provincial, and territorial governance model,  there is no single provider of unified, government-issued digital ID credentials for the country.
  • Within the DIACC, public and private sector members are working together to provide guidance for establishing digital ID credentials that prevent tracking, empower people with control over personal data, and help businesses and governments transact securely and efficiently.
  • This approach prioritizes secure, privacy enhancing, inclusive, and choice-driven digital ID usage for Canadians.

What is the DIACC?

The Digital Identification and Authentication Council of Canada (DIACC) is a non-profit coalition of public and private sector organizations committed to developing research and tools to enable secure, robust, and scalable Canadian digital ID solutions and services.  With privacy, security, and choice at the forefront of all DIACC initiatives, we aim to enable all Canadians to participate safely and confidently in the global digital economy.

What is the Pan-Canadian Trust Framework?

Developed and documented by the DIACC and its collaborating contributors, the Pan-Canadian Trust Framework (PCTF) is a publicly available set of tools, requirements, and criteria used to verify information assurance of digital solutions, services, and networks. Additionally, the PCTF:

  • Makes it easier for people and businesses to interact with governments, businesses, and other organizations with a high degree of confidence and privacy protections.
  • Is open and available to the Canadian and international public for review and adoption.
  • Is person-centric. The PCTF is designed to keep people safe while operating in the digital economy.