Mastercard Pilots Digital ID Verification Program In Australia

digital identity

Mastercard is launching a new digital resource that has the potential to instantly authenticate someone’s identity in a secure manner, the company said in a press release on Wednesday (Dec. 11).

The pilot will roll out in Australia with Australia Post and Deakin University.

Ajay Bhalla, president of cyber and intelligence for Mastercard, said everyday digital transactions and interactions have triggered the need for a new model for identity verification and privacy. 

“We believe that this starts with a commitment to the responsible handling of personal information, giving consumers control over which data is used and how it is used to verify their identity,” he said.

The pilot program will assess an innovative approach to identity verification that makes it unnecessary for people to have numerous documents. The process removes the necessity of having a centralized identity database. 

Mastercard outlined the model in March in a vision paper titled “Restoring Trust In A Digital World.” It is guided by Mastercard’s Principles of Digital Identity that is focused on “data rights and ownership, confidentiality, consent, transparency, security and inclusion.”

The Deakin University pilot at the Burwood and Geelong campuses in Victoria will tap student volunteers to use the identity verification process for class registration and digital exams.

William Confalonieri, chief digital officer for Deakin University, said the pilot is in step with the university’s digital-first strategy and this is the “first trial to test concepts that can one day deliver intelligent, future-focused solutions ready to respond to a digital world’s needs.” 

Regis Bauchiere, general manager, identity products and services for Australia Post, said the pilot complements its participation in the Trusted Digital Identity Framework and “positions Digital iD as the only identity provider offering our communities access to both government and private sector services.”

The digital identity verification market is projected to reach $12.8 billion by 2024, despite the fact that digital IDs are still largely underused in the world today.


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