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Mobey Forum urges banks to seize digital identity opportunity

Source: Mobey Forum

Banks must grasp the immediate opportunity to lead the development of a trusted approach to digital identity, according to a new report published today from the Digital ID Expert Group at Mobey Forum.

‘The Mobey Long Take - Post-Covid-19 Digital Identity’ report outlines the recent surge in demand for digital identity services, spurred by the Covid-19 pandemic, and explains why banks are best placed to lead implementation going forward. The report also explores the potential for Covid-19 contact tracing apps to accelerate the growth of the digital identity landscape.

“Banks have a long history of credibility and trust, placing them in an advantageous position to become the leading providers of digital identity services, particularly during times of global crisis,” comments Jukka Yliuntinen, co-chair of the Digital ID Expert Group, Mobey Forum. “During the Covid-19 pandemic, digital identity has become critical to enabling public access to key services including government benefits, healthcare and education. Many services became digital almost overnight and there is now a growing expectation for this to continue and improve, underpinned by a robust approach to digital identity. Banks are uniquely placed to lead the way with a centralised model which would alleviate many common fears around the collection, tracking and sharing of personal data.”

The report demonstrates the increased usage of existing digital identity schemes worldwide including Norwegian BankID, itsme, Verify and Verified.Me, as well as the shortcomings highlighted during the pandemic.

“Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, banks have played a critical role as a distribution mechanism for many of the government intervention and support strategies,” adds Elina Mattila, Executive Director, Mobey Forum. “As countries start to emerge from regional lockdowns, the creation of Covid-19 contact tracing apps - if designed correctly - could operate as a springboard for the creation of digital identity systems, giving people more choice over how they access key services in future. Banks should be ready to step in and support their evolution into a more comprehensive digital identity scheme.”

The report compares the Covid-19 contact tracing apps in development across different countries worldwide. It goes on to present three key considerations to ensure contact tracing apps can extend to additional use cases in future: whether the data should be centralised or decentralised, how users can maintain control over their personal data, and the flexibility of the app to extend into new services.

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