What is digital identity?
When we talk about digital identity, digital ID and digital identification, we are really describing how digital technology is altering identification programs - programs that existed before in analogue ways.
From e-passports to refugee registration cards, from online banking records to your social media profile – digital ID programs enable us to travel, do business, access services and stay connected.
Technology is fundamentally changing how ID programs are designed and managed. It is speeding up processes that once took a long time, changing what and how data is stored, and unlocking digital services for users.
But all identification programs require careful stewardship to ensure they remain a force for good and not a means of exclusion, surveillance, and control. How people are identified in the digital age can have massive implications for economies, societies, and individuals. It’s vital to ensure that identity programs reflect the Good ID approach, so that everyone is able to fully and fearlessly engage in our digital world.
What is Good ID?
Good ID is an approach to identity management that prioritizes data privacy and security.
As a framework of best practices, Good ID can help decision makers design and manage
ID programs so that individuals experience equity, utility, and security. In other words, Good ID helps leaders design ID programs that include, benefit, and protect everyone.
Too often, the needs, experiences, and rights of citizens, residents, or consumers are not considered in an ID program’s policies, technologies, and practices. This missed opportunity can lead to severe consequences. Bad ID programs can jeopardize privacy, present security risks, exclude, marginalize, abuse, and even endanger users. Governments and businesses that rely on Bad ID programs risk data breaches, cyberattacks, economic consequences and the loss of public trust.
In contrast, with the Good ID approach, ID is treated as a protected asset, controlled by each individual and safeguarded by law. In addition to privacy and security, Good ID elevates and frames the importance of inclusion, transparency, and accountability, and promotes ways for individuals to play a major role in their own identity management. The result is an ID that is worthy of the public’s trust.
Good ID is better for everyone. For individuals, this approach generates more economic and social opportunities, safely and conveniently. Governments who prioritize Good ID unlock more value from the digital economy and stand out as good stewards of an invaluable national asset - data. And businesses that design for Good ID can produce more transparent, responsive systems that better satisfy customers.
What is the #GoodID movement?
The #GoodID movement is a multi-sector coalition of privacy and security champions. These are individuals, businesses, and governments who believe in digital dignity, data protection, human-centered technologies, and quality identification programs.
Through global dialogue, research, and advocacy between governments, technologists, civil society, and all sectors of business, the #GoodID movement is helping to inform policy, technology design, and practice in all regions.
Everyone is welcome, especially those who do not typically engage in “digital identity” discussions. We need diverse perspectives from every sector of society to ensure the best solutions.
What can I do?
It’s more important than ever that a diverse community of stakeholders help inform and use the Good ID approach. As the pace of digital change accelerates, now is the time to build programs which have a positive impact in the decades to come.
To unlock the full value of identification as a force for social, economic, and individual good, governments and businesses need to embed Good ID approach into policies, technologies, and practices.
We invite anyone who is actively designing or refreshing identification programs, building applications on top of them, navigating the legal and political complexities of digital identity, researching the topic, and advocating on behalf of vulnerable groups to join the conversations taking place in person and online.
There are a number of ways to take part and help shape the dialogue:
– Watch this 90 second video on the power of #GoodID and how it unlocks opportunities
– Join the conversation on Twitter: look out for live discussions, latest news and views
– Suggest a topic for one of our upcoming #GoodIDChat discussions on Twitter
– Stay in touch: sign up to the email bulletin for monthly updates and events
– Submit an article: pitch your perspective or expertise on what makes Good ID
– Check out our Good ID messaging toolkit
– Help frame Good ID: give your suggestions for the growing glossary