Demanding Identity Systems on our Terms

– Privacy International

  • Viewpoint
  • 21 August 2019

Privacy International explains its campaigns to reimagine ID, identity and identification, offering reports, examples, news and analysis through a human rights lens

The charity advocating the human right of privacy throughout the world explains what it sees as the problems with the growing emergence of identity systems.

It stresses a “need to understand the lived reality of those who both have and do not have access to these systems, to understand their true impact.”

Privacy International outline issues arising from the use of large biometric databases, exclusion of certain groups from the identification systems, or exploitation through profiling and tracking.

It also identifies possible solutions to these issues, from proper legal and regulatory framework to limiting “function creep,” or a singular identity system being used for many functions beyond its original purpose.

Privacy International highlight their campaign work to “critically engage with national, state-provided identification systems, research their impacts, and to advocate for change,” including reports and analysis, education and explanatory content, advocacy, examples, and news and updates.

The notion that there must be a 'foundational' ID system, lying beneath all an individual's interactions with the state, needs to be challenged. … The danger is that the world is defaulting to biometric systems with unique identifiers, which leaves the systems open to abuse and causing harm

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