DTA releases Govpass YouTube video

The Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) has released a YouTube video showing how to create its new Govpass digital identity.

The video was announced in a blog by Felicity Hitchcock, a product manager at the DTA.

Govpass will replace the existing 100 point identifier used to access Federal Government services. It is still in its beta development phase and is being trialled with selected users. The DTA is working with Australia Post to integrate the system with that agency’s existing Digital iD program.

The Government intends Govpass to be universal digital ID for access all government services. It hopes to extend the system to the states and to private industry. Full scale implementation is planned for late 2018 or 2019.

The YouTube video shows how a Govpass ID can be created online using documents such as a Medicare card, passport, drivers license and other information. It is, we are told, ‘trusted and secure’, and has had ‘hundreds of hours of user testing’.

The documents are verified by the issuer. For example, a birth certificate will be verified by the department of Births, Deaths and Marriages in the issuing state.

The final step of the five-minute process is to verify a photograph of the user. Using the camera on a computer, phone or tablet, a number of photographs are taken.

These are submitted for comparison with an existing photographic identification such as a passport, which is held by the Attorney-General’s Department’s Facial Verification System – the same system that we were told just last week would be used only for antiterrorism.

“The Australian Government has more than 30 different logins for digital services,” said Assistant Minister for Digital Transformation Angus Taylor, announcing the availability of video.

“Not only does this create extra work for users, it represents unnecessary expense for agencies.”

Mr Taylor said no details from the documents, or the photograph, are retained by Govpass. They are verified and discarded.

“Face-to-face contact for government services will still be available, and an offline solution is being designed which will allow those who don’t have access to the appropriate documents to create a digital identity.”

The YouTube video can be viewed here.

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