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Verify team looks for new elements in ID assurance process

07/12/16

Project with Open Identity Exchange explores new data sources to support knowledge based verification

GOV.UK Verify has joined up with the Open Identity Exchange (OIX) in a project to provide new options for one of the stages in the identity verification process.

Question markThe team behind the project – providing a platform for online identity assurance for public services – has said it wants a new approach to knowledge based verification (KBV), one of the main elements in attaining verification for an identity.

It has generally revolved around asking the user questions to which only they would know the answers.

The certified company that provides the verification checks that these match the data it has on its records relating to the identity.

Private sector precedent

A programme blogpost says it is working with the OIX – which has been one of the prime partners of the Government Digital Service throughout the development of Verify – to identify other methods that fulfil the function. Some private sector organisations have been working on new ways of using data sources to do so.

“When it comes to improving our protection against identity fraud for users, the solution isn’t as simple as merely making KBV questions harder,” the blog says. “Identity fraud is a fluid and ever changing threat and we’re always looking at how to help keep our users secure.

“Our joint project with OIX is therefore focussed on being proactive when it comes to developing threats, so we’re seeking more sophisticated solutions from the market now.”

The Verify team and OIX have put out a call to the market to submit proposals on using alternative, additional or complementary data sources along with KBVs. They have also emphasised the importance of any solutions preserving the user’s privacy.

Image: Stannered, public domain through Wikimedia

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