What is Digital Identity?
Digital Identity is an Australian Government program that enables people to prove who they are to access online services at a time that suits them.
Digital Identity is a safe, secure and convenient way to access government and other services online. The Australian Government Digital Identity System (the System) includes everything from the policy and processes governing the System, to the technology that allows it to work.
A secure Digital Identity replaces the need for multiple logins to access different services. The System, pending the passage of Digital Identity legislation, will expand over time to include more government agencies as well as private sector organisations.
Creating and using a Digital Identity is not compulsory and is each person’s own choice to make. People can still access services in other ways, such as on the phone or in person at a government shopfront.
How the System works
Guided by lessons learned from other countries, the System:
is a network of trusted and accredited organisations
has a central government identity provider
is able to biometrically bind identities where needed
will be able to represent a whole-of-economy solution in the future.
What would participation in the System look like under Digital Identity legislation?
Private sector organisations and all government agencies can apply for accreditation under the Trusted Digital Identity Framework (TDIF) to demonstrate that their digital identity services are trusted, safe and secure and operate to the standards set by the Australian Government. Currently, only Commonwealth government agencies can onboard to participate in the System.
Pending the passage of Digital Identity legislation, private sector organisations and state and territory governments will be eligible to apply to onboard to the Australian Government Digital Identity System, making Digital Identity a whole-of-economy solution.
Options for identity services to engage with the System pending the passage of legislation:
Accredited participants and relying parties
The Digital Identity System includes 4 types of accredited participants:
Identity providers - help you set up and manage your Digital Identity. If you choose to create and use a Digital Identity, then your identity provider will be your gateway into the Digital Identity System. The Face Verification Service and Document Verification Service may be used by your identity provider as a way to verify your identity online. myGovID is the Commonwealth government identity provider. More identity providers will be onboarded as the System develops.
Attribute providers - verify specific attributes relating to entitlements or characteristics of an individual (for example, that you have a particular qualification). The ATO’s Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM) is an example of an attribute provider.
Credential providers - play a critical role in keeping the System secure and safe. They take care of credentials such as passwords and other forms of authentication used in the System.
Identity exchange - acts like a switchboard, transferring information, with your consent, between relying parties, identity providers and attribute service providers, in a way which is secure and respects your privacy.
Relying parties participate in the Digital Identity System by providing online services to people with a Digital Identity. Relying Parties are not accredited under TDIF and are currently limited to government agencies. Pending the passage of legislation, the System will expand to allow for private sector and state and territory government Relying Parties to participate in the Digital Identity System.
The Australian Government is allowing a number of state and territory government agencies to participate in the Australian Government Digital Identity System on a pilot basis as a part of our testing of the readiness of the Australian Government Digital Identity System to expand beyond the Australian Government.