Tag Archives: Research

Letter to the Hill Times Editor

May 7, 2021

Re: A little-known Trans-Canada digital identity regime in the works, in whose interest? by Ken Rubin, The Hill Times, May 3, 2021.

Dear Editor, 

In his column, “A little-known Trans-Canada digital identity regime in the works, in whose interest?”, Ken Rubin inaccurately writes that “On the legislative front, business-backed groups like the Digital Identification and Authentication Council of Canada are calling for revamping Canada’s outdated public-sector Privacy Act to allow for a more permissive legal regime that clears the way for digital IDs and one-stop digitized government services. … Canadian governments need to hit ‘pause’ and rethink their digital identity scheme and digital legislation which are pushing sufficient and secure privacy protection largely aside.”

The Digital Identification and Authentication Council of Canada (DIACC) was created following the federal government’s Task Force for the Payments System Review to bring together public and private sector partners in developing a safe and secure digital ID ecosystem that will enable Canada’s full and beneficial participation in the global digital economy.

The DIACC has more than 100 members spanning several sectors including public policy leaders and chief information officers from the federal and provincial governments, networks for payments and for identity verification, technology service providers, strategy and integration experts and financial institutions.

The DIACC fully shares the author’s concern for Canadian’s privacy. This concern is why, for 10 years, the DIACC has built up this important sector as the trusted voice for driving the development of a pan-Canadian trust framework, standards, and initiatives that support the establishment of a fully digital, and privacy-respecting country that Canadians want. DIACC prioritizes a federated approach to work in alignment with Canada’s federal, provincial, territorial, and Indigienous governments. This approach does not support linking of identities, rather, it leverages and extends Privacy by Design principles to enable Canadians to choose which identity credentials they wish to use respecting diversity and promoting inclusion. 

According to recent research, the majority of Canadians believe it is important for federal and provincial governments to move quickly on enabling digital ID in a safe and secure manner. It also shows that collaboration between governments and the private sector continues to be considered the best approach to create a pan-Canadian digital ID framework.

In today’s digital economy, and as the pandemic has made clear, Canadians should be empowered to give informed consent for its use across multiple platforms and in economic areas where proving identity is crucial for secure transactions.

Establishing digital ID that works for Canadians is not about creating one identity to be used for surveillance or tracking. It’s about using the credentials that Canadians already have offline (eg: passports, driver’s licenses, health cards, citizenship cards, bank cards, student cards); having those credentials securely issued digitally; and being able to use them for digital transactions  —  from opening a bank account from the comfort of home, to accessing medical records, to receiving government benefits quickly and easily.

When it comes to legislation, there is no clear policy directive in C-11 that allows Canadians to understand what they can expect in terms of accessing the data the public services have about them. This is why it’s essential for the federal government to empower Canadians to be able to use the credentials associated with them in a modern digital economy, with security and privacy. If Canada is going to be a modern digital society and economy, Canadians must understand what they can expect about data that exists about them in both the public and private sectors. 

Canadian governments should not ‘hit pause’ on digital ID, they should be investing in truly unlocking digital. Investing in digital ID not only makes economic sense but also establishes digital tools to support societal trust, provides security, strengthens privacy, and mitigates fraud. This is a win for all.

Sincerely,

Joni Brennan
President, Digital Identification and Authentication Council of Canada

International Award – Distributed Privacy Enhancing Technology

Digital ID and Authentication Council of Canada Awarded International Grant to Advance Cloud Based Identity Management, Security, and Data Privacy

Read the Paper | Watch the Video

Funding to Support Research and Development of New Cloud Based Solutions – Founded on Canadian Values-  to Protect Digital Identities and Enable Canada’s Digital Economy

TORONTO– February 14, 2017 –The Digital ID and Authentication Council of Canada (DIACC), a non-profit coalition of public and private sector leaders committed to developing a Canadian digital identification and authentication framework, today announced their receipt of a new applied research grant, in collaboration with Canada’s SecureKey Technologies, to enable the development of a cloud based identity ecosystem.

The grant, valued at up to US$800,000, is the result of a collaboration between the DIACC and the Command, Control, and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analytics (CCICADA) a research center of excellence at Rutgers University funded by the Science & Technology Directorate of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

“DIACC helps to drive innovation in Canada – for the world – by catalyzing ground breaking digital ID and authentication research,” said Joni Brennan, President, DIACC. “By focusing on applying Canadian values of privacy, security and transparency to the development of the global digital identity ecosystem, DIACC is working to ensure that Canada is a leader in shaping the global digital economy. If Canada is to seize the opportunity of the digital economy, we must invest together in digital ID and authentication – these are the rails upon which the digital economy runs.”

Leveraging modern distributed network architectures (blockchain), the Cloud Identity Ecosystem will give Canadian businesses, consumers, governments and civil society members the tools they need to securely manage digital identities and assets. The Ecosystem will be built within a framework that protects and promotes Canadian values and perspectives; applying the ten DIACC Digital Identity Ecosystem Principals that a trusted digital ecosystem must:

  1. Be robust, secure, and scalable
  2. Implement, protect, and enhance Privacy by Design
  3. Be inclusive, open, and meets broad stakeholder needs
  4. Be transparent in governance and operation
  5. Provide Canadians choice, control, and convenience
  6. Be built on open, standards-based protocols
  7. Be interoperable with international standards
  8. Be cost effective and open to competitive market forces
  9. Be able to be independently assessed, audited and subject to enforcement
  10. Minimize data transfer between authoritative sources and will not create new identity databases

“SecureKey is fully committed to developing a national cloud ecosystem that puts consumers first and increases both their digital security and privacy,” said Andre Boysen, Chief Identity Officer of SecureKey. “This funding will be essential in making that commitment a reality, ensuring that consumers have access to secure digital protection.”

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This project is funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology Directorate (DHS S&T). Any opinions contained herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of DHS S&T, CCICADA, and the broader DIACC membership.

About Digital ID and Authentication Council of Canada (DIACC)

Created as a result of the federal government’s Task Force for the Payments System Review, the DIACC is a non-profit coalition of public and private sector leaders committed to developing a Canadian digital identification and authentication framework to enable Canada’s full and secure participation the global digital economy. DIACC members include representatives from both the federal and provincial levels of government as well as private sector leaders.

 

The DIACC’s objective is to unlock economic opportunities for Canadian consumers, and businesses by providing the framework to develop a robust, secure, scalable and privacy enhancing digital identification and authentication ecosystem that will decrease costs for governments, consumers, and business while improving service delivery and driving GDP growth. To learn more visit www.diacc.ca or follow us on twitter @mydiacc

 

About The Command, Control and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analysis

CCICADA — The Command, Control and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analysis — is a U.S. Department of Homeland Security University Center of Excellence that uses advanced data analysis and systems to address natural and manmade threats to the safety and security of the American people. CCICADA’s work is carried out by researchers and students with 17 partner institutions. The lead university in the partnership is Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey. CCICADA’s director is Dr. Fred Roberts, Professor of Mathematics at Rutgers.

 

About SecureKey Technologies

SecureKey is a leading identity and authentication provider that simplifies consumer access to online services and applications. SecureKey enables next generation privacy-enhancing identity and authentication network for conveniently connecting people to critical online services using a digital credential they already have and trust. SecureKey is headquartered in Toronto, with offices in Boston and San Francisco. For more information, please visit www.securekey.com.

 

For more information, please contact:

 

Krista Pawley

Digital ID and Authentication Council of Canada

Kpawley@diacc.ca

416-270-9987