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UK Government Plans ID Assurance Marketplace

Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude has outlined the government’s plans to create a digital identity system so that UK citizens can access public services online.

The government plans to create a marketplace for private firms to provide identity assurance services. People would choose the provide of their choice who would then be responsible for assuring the identity of the customers when they access public services online.

The UK coalition government plans to introduce the identity assurance model in August 2012. If all goes well, the government plans to come up with a working prototype of the model in October this year.

“Online services have the potential to make life more convenient for service users as well as delivering cost savings. However, currently customers have to enter multiple log-in details and passwords to access different public services, sometimes on the same website,” said Maude, The Register reports.

“It acts as a deterrent to people switching to digital channels, hampers the vision of digital being the primary channel for accessing government information and transactions, and provides an opportunity for fraudster,” he added.

The move comes as the government plans to make a majority of its public services exclusively available online in order to reduce costs.