Dozens of countries worldwide have upgraded their national identity programs to support electronic IDs (eIDs) and more are on their way. The benefits of having an eID program, in form of a card or any derived digital option like mobile or wearables, range from security aspects, such as decreasing the amount of identity theft and fraud, to more efficient administrative processes and convenient services while saving costs – if done right.
Developing and implementing a national program for electronic IDs (eIDs) is a complex, time-consuming, and expensive undertaking. Each country does things a little differently, but we’ve found that there are several things that all successful eID deployments have in common.
Create a Strong Foundation
The baseline configuration should support all the use cases defined for the initial rollout, such as those required by law enforcement, border-control agencies, government agencies, private-sector services, and so on. The baseline configuration should also be both flexible and robust enough to support expansion over time, to support use cases that aren’t yet available but will be soon.
- Be clear about what you’re building Begin by defining the eGovernment strategy and derive the respective use cases and business models for the eID program accordingly. This part of the process can take a considerable amount of time and effort, since it means aligning with various public and private stakeholders. Communicate your vision to show that taxpayer money is being spent wisely, and that services in the public and private sectors are gaining efficiency.
- Make it mandatory Clearly define the use cases that mandate the secure authentication of a citizen and establish the necessary legal framework to support those use cases. The legal framework ensures that any rules for the use of eIDs, especially with services requiring a high level of trust, such as opening a bank account, will be enforced.
- Identify a baseline configuration Create a solid starting point by defining the technology framework and its baseline functionality. The baseline configuration provides a generic authentication token for all the current and planned services. It should, for example, support on and offline authentication, should include enough memory to support the data required for existing and follow interoperability with standard infrastructure for upcoming functionality.
Want to learn more about the next steps from pre-issuance to developing overall system solutions? Start reading our whitepaper about considerations for a successful implementation of an eID program.