Verifying your identity on GOV.UK Verify with SecureIdentity: Your top three most frequently asked questions (FAQs)
“Why is this happening?”, “Is the new process secure?” and “Will my data be sold on or used for sales purposes?”: these are the three most common questions asked by people like you when we tell them abut the new certification process used by GOV.UK Verify. In this first release of our growing Q&A, let’s deal with these important questions one by one.
Question: Why is this happening?
Answer: When people in the UK are asked about the government’s online services 65 percent of them say they lag behind those used by the big ‘dotcom’ internet companies that they trust every day. Today most people want straightforward, secure, private access to the services they need online. They don’t want to wait for something in the post and they don’t want to have to go somewhere in person.
GOV.UK Verify has been designed to meet the changing needs of UK citizens. Verifying your identity on GOV.UK Verify is fast: it takes about 10 minutes the first time you verify your identity, and less than a minute each time after that. Right now 13 government services are connected to GOV.UK Verify (7 can be accessed as public beta services). By April next year about 30 government services will be using the system and others will join over 2016/17.
When people start learning about GOV.UK Verify, one of the first things they come to understand is that they must choose from one of nine certified verification companies to obtain their own personal secure ID. All companies are guided by nine Identity Assurance Principles and all offer the verification service at no cost. But why has the government decided to partner with nine different certified verification companies?
The government believes that working with certified companies creates competition and choice to make Government transactions safer, simpler and faster. Personal privacy is better protected because no central government database of verified users exists and latest technology will be introduced faster because certified companies will seek to gain competitive advantage (see Francis Maude speaking on role of GOV.UK Verify at the EntrepreneurCountry Global Forum, Feb 2015).
Question: Is the new process secure?
Answer: Yes.When you login to GOV.UK Verify for the first time you’ll be asked to choose from a list of nine different verification companies. To become a certified verification company a business must be able to meet or exceed high standards set by government and an independent certification body.
Question: Will my data be sold on or used for sales purposes?
Answer: This summer, when we prompted people to watch the government’s explainer video for GOV.UK Verify, they frequently asked about marketing and sales usage. With nine different private companies certified to offer the verification service, concerns that information provided may be used for marketing purposes was the third most frequently asked question.
To address privacy concerns, the identity assurance programme’s independent Privacy and Consumer Advisory Group provides nine Identity Assurance Principles. These principles are intended to guide the operation of the service, both by government and the certified companies.
SecureIdentity by Morpho is committed to these guiding principles and our company is singularly focused on making secure access to protected information possible for millions of people around the world. We don’t do retail, banking, consumer credit or credit checking services.