Mobile Cloud Identity Services for Government

One of the big focus areas for the USA`s recent Digital Government strategy is to grow the use of mobile applications.

Digital Government Identity

We have now published our guide to Government Cloud Identity, and this will be a key technology in facilitating this innovation.

For SaaS Entrepreneurs, the key aspect to understand about this technology is the role it plays in enabling more Trustworthy business processes; as in what the UK describes as Trustworthy Transactions.

Traditionally identity security is achieved by multi-factor model, but via a single step: You provide your username/password, and also a token ID of some kind. In contrast the Claims-based approach utilizes a multi-step approach, where different “relying parties” each play a different role in the authentication process.

For telco providers this offers a unique opportunity, where devices like our cell phones can act as the first part of this workflow.

As described in this news release in the USA Verizon has been approved as a provider of Government IDaaS – Identity as a Service.

Kantara, the Identity standards group who approves this capability, operates a telco working group where they are designing new innovations that build on this. For example in this white paper Bridging IMS and Internet Identity, they describe how integration can be achieved between open Internet identity standards like OpenID, with the proprietary ones of cell phone networks like IMSI.

When used in conjunction with the same mechanisms on Cloud hosted applications, then an end-to-end Trusted Transaction model is possible.

Being able to offer secured identities as a service will open up a whole range of new and innovative ways where they can be used as a building block for new services, for example:

  • Age verification at Point of Sale 
  • Identity verification via voice – It’s hugely frustrating not being able to hear doctors medical results over the telephone… because they can’t validate your Identity. Being able to do so will enable a secure deliver method for this information.
  • Identity-enabled mobile commerce – Automated procurement achieved not from a device-centric approach to mobile commerce, but a Trusted Identity ecosystem based one.

SaaS Entrepreneurs who utilize these building blocks will therefore be able to write and sell a portfolio of an entirely new paradigm of Government apps: Trusted, mobile services.

For example this one is a great conclusion to this article, as he shares a best practices presentation for securing Internet transactions, using their Adaptive Access Manager technology. Hosting providers like BT use this context to define new value-add services, like a managed service for Fraud Protection.

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Trackbacks

  1. […] In my presentation I then outlined the regulatory framework that Canada could deploy so these powerful features could be utilized for e.g. Government-secured applications. […]

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