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Photo: / vic josh

Analysing the Impact of Digital ID Frameworks on Marginalised Groups in Sub-Saharan Africa

– Cyrilla

A report looking at how digital ID systems in Cameroon, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa have affected the human rights of vulnerable populations

The paper explains that the combined countries have around 175 million residents who lack legal identification, and states the ways in which the roll-out of digital identity schemes can further marginalise these people. One issue the report highlights is that many digital ID schemes require people to register with other forms of identification, so that people who are already unregistered will remain so.

“With the continued roll out and adoption of digital ID systems, marginalised communities run the risk of further being disadvantaged and discriminated against by either being locked out of the system or having their data exploited.”

The report outlines the regulatory and technical challenges standing in the way of fully inclusive ID systems in these countries, including the lack of safeguards around privacy and cybersecurity risks.

It is becoming increasingly apparent that Sub-Saharan African countries face challenges that require a more nuanced and rights-based approach when introducing digital ID systems

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