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GSMA Digital Identity Programme: Insights and Achievements (2016–2020)


A look at how the digital identity landscape has changed since 2016, and what the GSM Association (GSMA), has accomplished in that time

This report outlines the trajectory of discussions around digital ID in the last four years. When GSMA’s Digital Identity program began picking up speed, a shared idea of what good digital identity meant did not exist, but there was much debate about the levels of responsibility of public and private bodies.

“Developments in India, with the rapid scaling of the Aadhaar system (which provided all citizens with a 12-digit ID number and biometric authentication), shone a light on both the potential for, and challenges of, integrating technical solutions and private sector players in an official ID ecosystem.”

The report states that since 2016, digital identity has become a popular and expansive topic. A global dialogue about digital ID has emerged, with vital questions around design and ethics being asked, while many governments are beginning to develop ID solutions.

Multi-stakeholder cooperation has led to shared principles and definitions, and there is early evidence that digital identity initiatives are having an impact and new business models are emerging

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