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Questioning the Appropriate Use of Digital Identity

– Omidyar Network

An article examining the risks posed by data collection and digital ID during the COVID-19 pandemic

Safeguarding innovations in digital identity is crucial to protecting vulnerable populations and preserving privacy. In this blog, Bhadra outlines Omidyar Network’s funding of research to better understand identity systems and the ways in which good digital infrastructure can be used to improve people’s lives.

“Unthoughtful reliance on digital ID systems for these innovations can also exacerbate existing challenges with the exclusion of vulnerable populations from services, especially for those who lack a digital ID or cannot authenticate themselves biometrically.”

The article states that governments should only introduce new uses of digital ID if it is properly safeguarded, and outlines the requirements for necessity, proportionality, and legality that digital identity must fulfill.

We believe that such transparent, accountable, and trust-building practices are necessary before using data and digital identities in the fight against COVID-19 — and gets to the heart of what Good ID is and needs to be

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