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US Government Agency Invites Organizations To Help It Accelerate Adoption of Digital ID

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There appears to be a real sense of urgency among various governments and international organizations and groups not only to implement, but to speed up as much as possible adoption of digital IDs.

One of these entities is the US government, with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) now inviting “anyone with expertise and products” to join the push for a speedy deployment of digital IDs on mobile devices.

The NIST National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence is charged with implementing this project, which is public-private in nature, with development of reference infrastructure (standards) stated as the goal that those interested would be working on.

It may or may not appease the many critics of digital IDs to learn that NIST is promising this infrastructure will be “privacy focused and secure” – not to mention equitable and easy to not only adopt, but also use.

In other words, this governments agency is on the one hand offering platitudes about privacy and security to cover the issue of the key criticism around the very concept and implementations of digital IDS – and on the other, NIST is “betting on convenience” when its speaks of ease of adoption and use as a way to “lure in” as many people as fast as possible.

The National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence is also saying that it is “cybersecurity challenges” that are to blame for the insufficiently fast rate of adoption.

This particular piece of the puzzle in the push for digital ID introduction has the effort to create “centralized” (international) standards at its core – and in this, the US is not alone, since right now, there are multiple such attempts.

This recently prompted the EU to come out with a report supposed to help companies developing digital IDs deal with the many standards. The struggle, as they say, is real: back in 2017 cross-border banking standards was something on which giants like HSBC and Barclays joined forces with the EU.

As for the current US effort, the first step is for those with “expertise and products” to submit letters of interest which must prove they support three mobile driver’s license standards (ISO/IEC, 18013-5, and 18013-7).

The deadline for this is September 28.

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