Identity for Digital Government
Digital Identity refers to the various usernames and log-on procedures we use to interact with web sites and other digital services.
Michael Gorriz explains how Identity is a universal function, one that spans across government, banking and every other online service that we use.
Government identity programs, such as Gov.UK Verify, seek to leverage this interconnectedness through linking their authentication systems with others like banks to streamline the procedure from a users perspective, an approach known as ‘federated identity’.
Scottish Government Digital Identity
The Scottish Government writes on their blog about their plans for Identity adoption, and as they describe you can access an overview of the research they have conducted so far, along with a more detailed vision for their Alpha phase.
This provides a highly detailed analysis of their decision process and fundamentals of Identity-enabled digital service design.
The Aberdeen Digital Transformation Blueprint describes a plan to implement a ‘My Account’ feature for users, that simplifies and streamlines services for them across the 400+ different applications that Aberdeen operates.
Their Digital Plan lists a number of specific objectives towards this goal:
- Our Staff will spend less time inputting and updating information in systems as we join them up so they do it automatically.
- Our Staff will have the right information to help customers, as we improve the way we share and join up our data.
- Use our data to identify you so that you do not need to provide the same data many times.
- Hold one set of customer information across all key systems.
- Implement a single account for external customers.
- Introduce a Single and staff account to allow for the federation of core systems with other organizations such as Aberdeenshire Council and the NHS.
A critical point to highlight is that these are common requirements across all Scottish authorities.
For example in their roadmap plans East Ayrshire describes "Unified Customer Accounts / Single-View - Wherever possible, services will be provided that allow a single ID to enable a consistent unified view of the customer", and similarly Dundee City Council describe the same functionality requirements in their roadmap:
"Delivering on online customer portal and working towards creating a single identity for our citizens to make requesting services simpler, all linked through our citizen account, MyDundee."