Programme director points to nine in public beta with the prospect of more to come in time for April launch
About 15 central government services are expected to begin using the GOV.UK Verify service for online identity assurance when it shifts from public beta to live in April.
The forecast has been made in a monthly update by Janet Hughes, Verify programme director, which also says that more companies are expected to join the programme as certified providers of identity verification services over the next two months.
A Cabinet Office spokesperson confirmed that the 15 services expected to join include nine that are currently available in public beta form: HM Revenue & Customs' personal tax account sign-in, tax refund claims, self-assessment tax return filing, helping friends or family with tax, and updating company car tax; the Department for Work & Pensions' applications for Universal Credit; Business, Innovation and Skills' claim for redundancy and monies owed; the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency's view or share licence information; and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs' rural payments claims. Details of the others are yet to be confirmed.
Before it goes live, Verify will have to pass the service standard assessment in the Government Service Design Manual, but the forecast of the number of services to go live suggests the team is confident of it passing. Hughes says the service has already met many of the 18 points of the digital by default service standard.
The increase in the number of certified companies depends on them completing all of the contractual gates for the service. Five companies are in the frame – Barclays, GB Group, Morpho, Paypal and Royal Mail – but there is no indication of how many are expected to pass in time for the go live.
Four companies are already certified: Digidentity, Experian, Post Offfice and Verizon.
Hughes also reiterates an earlier forecast that the demographic coverage of Verify – the percentage of people expected to use it being able to do so – should hit 90% by April.
She also says the programme is on course to hit the target of a 90% success rate for people trying to verify their identity with one of the certified companies.