Digital Identity – Keystone Foundation for Digital Business and Global Opportunity for Canada

Digital Identity begins with the simple process of username/password authentication but extends into a deep ecosystem that represents our ‘digital twin‘ and makes possible integrated digital services.

It is the central keystone to enabling online services; for example the Canadian Government have defined themselves a strategic objective of:

Digitize all public-facing government services so they are accessible by web and mobile phone and available behind a unified login system by 2025.

It is the building block common to all digital enablement scenarios. For example the Interac Developer Centre offers this excellent use case for immigration, and also ones for Drivers Licences and Health.

The fact Identity is common to all industries in making possible these next generation digital service models is explained through the fact that the Interac Centre is intended to facilitate ‘Open Banking‘ capabilities, what are also achieved through exactly the same Identity-enabled integrations.

The Global Opportunity

The huge nature of the commercial opportunity is evident through this fact of universality – Every organization, in the world, needs an Identity strategy to underpin their digital initiatives, and secondly, it is still a field that many are struggling with; it is a complex technology to get right.

For example in the UK the Verify scheme has absorbed huge amounts of effort and investment but now appears to be doomed to failure. They have just finished running a consultation, presumably to explore options for how they retreat from this debacle and forge a new path.

This new path represents the nature of the global opportunity for Canada, who through pioneers like British Columbia have instead been embracing the emergent field of Blockchain and ‘Self-Sovereign Identity’. Given these business processes are identical for all governments across the world, the potential to export this capability and enable others to do the same is absolutely massive.


A headline example of Canada’s pedigree in this field is SecureKey, a long term veteran and pioneer of Digital Identity innovations, such as recently launching ‘Verified.Me‘, a web service for users to proactively verify their online identities.

Examples of their growing international success include being an enabling component part of Digital Bazaar’s new proof of concept Identity service. Virginia based Digital Bazaar focuses on open payment and credential projects, with mainly large enterprises and federal governments as clients.

Last week SecureKey executive Andre Boysen appeared before the US Congress Financial Services Committee to share their experiences of building a Canadian Identity ecosystem – Clearly this is policy influencing at the highest possible global level, and demonstrative of the massive international potential for Canada in this field.

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