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Pushing for digital IDs that accommodate Australia’s First Nations people

Pushing for digital IDs that accommodate Australia’s First Nations people

The Australian federal government continues to struggle with digital IDs that make it easy for First Nations people to access services that others take for granted.

An article and video program published by news and analysis publication InnovationAus.com points out that the government has made strides in including First Nations Australians in digital identity programs. The video was produced in part by ID security firm Ping Identity.

But there seems to be a further distance to travel to reach equity.

Jason-Urranndulla Davis, founder of Holdaccess, maker of a digital wallet for First Nation people, participated in the video saying that indigenous people in large sections of Australia use multiple names that cannot be accommodated on digital IDs.

Davis explained that there may already be a solution to situations like this one. He says First Nations people have a universal communication tradition that is 60,000 years old called the message stick.

The sticks, small and notched with a few symbols is carried by a person moving from their own tribal land through another tribe’s land. Even if another tribe spoke another language, its members could decipher the message and let the person continue to travel.

Holdaccess, according to Davis, has built its WUNA product on that premise. WUNA is an identification combination of app and a physical ID card.

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