Following extensive assessment and due diligence, the States of Jersey has selected specialist UK company, Yoti, as government’s digital ID provider. This system will enable customers to prove who they are, and safely access government services online.
London-based Yoti was selected from a shortlist of nine bidders in a procurement exercise that started in August 2017. Yoti’s approach to privacy and security, and its potential for wider use beyond government services, were significant factors in the selection. Yoti is a member of the Data Protection Forum and is preparing for the new data protection legislation that is set to come into force later this year.
Assistant Minister, Deputy Scott Wickenden, said: “One of the reasons we’ve chosen Yoti is that its verification system can be used by many other organisations. Yoti can verify identity, and therefore age, so this means that a wide range of industries – from financial services to hospitality – can use it to prove the identity of their customers.
“We have already established a consistent set of security standards for all IT systems used by the States of Jersey. We have set up one.gov.je as a central platform for new personal digital services as they come online, from checking social security contributions to accessing health records. Now that we have selected a digital ID provider, we can build more online services for Islanders.”
The e-Gov team invited companies to tender to provide a digital ID service in August 2017. After comprehensive assessment and evaluation by security and identity professionals and senior service owners, a preferred supplier was identified in December 2017. Since then the team has been conducting due diligence on the security, technical, commercial and contractual details with Yoti.
Now that the contract is signed, Yoti will work with the government’s technical team to build their service into the States of Jersey’s technology systems. The ID verification service will be accepted by government as a means of identification from May, and will be promoted for islanders to use with online government services as they become available.
The States of Jersey’s Chief Executive, Charlie Parker, said: “This important piece of technology is fundamental to restructuring our public services and providing integrated, online services to islanders. We have established one set of standards for all our online services and now we have a digital ID system that allows islanders to interact with government on a confidential, secure basis. This is a vital step in modernising the States of Jersey, and in developing a more effective, efficient and responsive public sector, with outstanding services at its core.
Deputy Wickenden added: “The States of Jersey Police are keen to use Yoti to help them prevent under-age drinking and to support businesses in protecting minors. One of the first applications of this technology is likely to be to verify the age of people entering licensed premises and events. Individuals will be able to leave valuable ID documents at home and prove their age with their phone.”
Yoti uses advanced hybrid encryption to secure personal details, and the private keys to access personal details belong to each individual user, which only they can access. This means Yoti cannot access customers’ personal data from its own servers. Unlike a government issued identity, customers own their own data and choose what they share with different organisations.
Yoti is an associate member of the UK Council for Child Internet Safety and a member of the British Retail Consortium and the Cross Industry Fraud Prevention Service, CIFAS. Yoti has also started working in the Financial Conduct Authority’s sandbox, testing an innovative form of KYC in regulated financial services markets.