Digital Identity Scotland – Working towards a prototype

February 4, 2020 by No Comments | Category Digital Identity, Digital Public Services, Digital Scotland

In this blog, Mike Crockart, Delivery Lead for the Digital Identity Scotland (DIS) Programme, provides an update following recent procurements and work which has begun on a prototype…

“A reusable digital identity service will require the clear understanding, trust, and engagement of users. Our solution will be founded on user-centric principles reducing the need for further aggregation of identity data or growth of new centralized data structures, whether in the public or private sectors. It will help solve governmental data-sharing conundrums by placing data that it holds under the control and for the benefit of the individual citizen. The last few weeks have seen this vision move into a new phase as we have kicked-off a 10-week prototype to build and test an attribute-led approach to support simple, safe and secure access to public services.

After gaining buy-in to such an approach from senior leaders in the meeting of 22 Nov (more info and presentation is available from our previous blog), we ran a competitive tender process to deliver this prototype. Mydex CIC, in partnership with DHI (Digital Health and Social Care Institute), were awarded the contract to work with us and two public sector organisations to develop a prototype to test the technical feasibility and usability of the proposed service. As well as other things, this will test the use of a strong authentication credential (registration/login) to enable reuse across services and also establishing a citizen-controlled attribute store that is also reusable across services, with appropriate user consent to simplify access to services and reducing tedious things like form filling.

We held successful meetings last week with the Mydex CIC/ DHI and the programme team, as well as a useful workshop with Young Scot to identify potential use cases to be explored in the prototype. A number of ideas were generated, with the frontrunners being to test the use of attributes from a Young Scot National Entitlement Card, held in an attribute store, to enable the opening of a bank account online or to potentially facilitate the university/ college matriculation process. It is important to note we will be using demonstration/ simulation environments and dummy data for the prototype, and we will be testing the experience with real users to inform development.

We are developing a plan and timescales for the prototype, and will share updates and key dates here including details of how to be involved. We would be particularly keen to engage with other public sector organisations as we look to gain insight from the prototype and apply this learning to a future beta/ live digital identity service that meets the needs of citizens and the Scottish public sector.

I’m also very pleased that in the last week we have welcomed new members to the DIS programme team to support this work. They join us from Sopra Steria, under the Scottish Government Digital Transformation Division ‘bench’ contract. It’s great to have them all on board.”

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