In what is said to be an Australian-first pilot, a joint initiative between between eftpos and Scope Global has been announced, aiming to strengthen and simplify digital identification processes for those living with a disability.
Improving digital independence and control
One in five Australians identify as having a disability, and are reportedly encountering significant challenges in identifying themselves in a digital world.
In response to this, the joint initiative between eftpos and South Australian Government-owned company, Scope Global aims to shape eftpos’ identity technology to enable people who live with a disability to identify themselves more easily online.
This will be part of eftpos’ new digital identity solution, connectID, which began in July 2020, and will enable those with a disability to connect and transact with businesses and government service providers with increased independence and control.
“The pilot seeks to facilitate identity verification methods to help reduce the instances of fraud and identity theft and improve ‘digital trust’ between customers and vendors,” says CEO of eftpos, Stephen Benton.
Mr Benton adds that the connectID pilot will focus on people who are blind and/or vision impaired, and people with cerebral palsy or who use assistive devices to access digital platforms.
Scope Global Chairman, David Travers says that Scope Global is well credentialed to bring its experience to the pilot.
“People living with a disability – some 19% of the Australian population – encounter significant challenges in identifying themselves in an increasingly online world.
“The pilot will allow a joint assessment of the market need and commercial opportunity for identity service providers linked to the eftpos ecosystem while designing improved identity verification methods for people with a disability.”
‘Unable to input basic details’
As part of this initiative, eftpos is working with unique disability consulting service Maven, which is part of Scope Global.
Maven consults to governments, businesses and not-for-profit organisations, providing insights about website and digital content accessibility, tailored disability awareness training and physical premise accessibility reviews.
Scope Global Maven Disability Inclusion Advisor, Zel Iscel says she faces many frustrations when trying to identify herself online and would welcome the independence and privacy provided by simplified digital identification processes for people living with disability.
“If the form fields are not coded or labelled properly, I’m unable to input basic details such as my name,” says Ms Iscel.
“Visual captchas are impossible for me, so I have to wait for someone sighted. I just want to get it done when I want to – and it’s super annoying when that doesn’t happen!”
Ms Iscel commends eftpos for its work in ensuring its digital identity solution is accessible to as many people as possible.
“Also, if the technology allows for various ways to verify and manage identification, I believe people with disability would use it.
“We cherish our right for independence, choice and control, and we appreciate opportunities that allow us to exercise these rights.”
eftpos’ Entrepreneur in Residence and spearhead of the eftpos initiative, Rob Allen, says connectID can be used to verify a consumer’s identity for a range of different reasons, such as proof of age, address details, or bank account information.
“The interoperable connectID solution is designed to work within the TDIF [The Trusted Digital Identity Framework] and the Australian payment industry’s TrustID framework, as well as emerging international standards, potentially opening much more of online world to Australians with a disability,” says Mr Allen.
eftpos’ connectID is like a ‘broker’ between identity providers, such as Australia Post, and merchants or government departments that need to verify who they are dealing with, especially for interactions requiring payment.
While connectID securely facilitates the identity verification or data exchange, it does not store the identity data. Identity service providers store consumer identities and take responsibility for providing this secure information only under the consent of the identity owner.
For more information, visit: eftposaustralia.com.au.
Feature image: Zel Iscel, Scope Global Maven Disability Inclusion Advisor.