Skip to the content

Scotland’s Vouchsafe for digital identities goes to beta


Mark Say Managing Editor

Get UKAuthority News


Identity icons on different screens
Image source:

The Vouchsafe project for digital identities in Scottish public services has moved into its beta phase with the team beginning to explain its operation to the public.

The project is being developed by the company of the same name with the Scottish Government Digital Identity Service to provide a social vouching element for proving an identity. This involves one person with a verified identity vouching for another to establish their digital identity, rather than relying on a document such as a passport or driving licence.

Following the launch of the project in January, Vouchsafe has published a newsletter, stating that the service is available and can be used by the one in five people without access to the basic forms of ID.

It has also run a demo day this week with CivTech, the Scottish government programme for the development of new digital services.

How it works

The service works through a user providing some basic information and a video selfie, followed by their referee certifying that they are who say and verifying their own identity by scanning a document.

Vouchsafe then runs a mix of background and anti-fraud checks to verify the information provided and confirm the new identity.

In the newsletter, Chloe Coleman and Jaye Hackett of Vouchsafe said: “When we start to explain Vouchsafe, people tend to assume it’s only for people at society’s fringes. Of course that’s part of the story, and one of our driving motivations for building it in the first place. 

“But Vouchsafe is actually much bigger than that. It helps people at the fringes, towards the fringes, or people in any number of everyday scenarios.”

Whitehall’s Government Digital Service has indicated that it is looking at the possibility of using social vouching within the One Login service for digital identities, but has not yet taken the concept to the lengths of the Scottish Government initiative.

Register For Alerts

Keep informed - Get the latest news about the use of technology, digital & data for the public good in your inbox from UKAuthority.