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Omidyar Network defines “Good ID” to encourage responsible identity systems


Omidyar Network has updated its conceptualization of what it means by “Good ID” in its advocacy for extending legal identification and UN Sustainable Development Goal 16.9.

“Good ID is our normative framing for any digital identity system that prioritizes individual empowerment while ensuring adequate safeguards,” says Omidyar Network Director of Marketing Strategy and Communications Abiah Weaver in a blog post.

The post summarizes the view contained in a six-page document (PDF) detailing how Good ID can address exclusion, discrimination, surveillance and consent issues. The organization sets out seven practical steps for supporting Good ID, including the establishment of ethical and legal frameworks, feedback loops, research, and future-resilient tools to ensure sound decision-making, and the use of open standards and open-source technology to prevent vendor lock-in.

Five design features are also recommended to support the privacy, inclusion, user value, user control, and security of digital identity systems. Systems should be set up to allow individuals to change how their identity information is used, with limits to the number and type of situations in which digital ID is mandatory, paths for startups to build services for customers on top of the system to add value, options for individuals to update records, deny permission to use their identity, and revoke previously granted permissions, and public and private frameworks to support security practices like audit trails and defined responsibilities.

Omidyar invites other stakeholders to participate in the dialogue around Good ID at its website dedicated to the cause.

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