Singapore to offer identity verification service for businesses by 2019

by Simon Cohen

The Government Technology Agency (GovTech) announced Tuesday that the nation would launch the SG-Verify by December 2019. Businesses that seek to securely carry out visitor registration and customer acquisition at events will be able to leverage on a new service offered by GovTech later this year. This initiative is part of the Singapore Government’s effort to develop a national digital identity (NDI) system where residents can use to access services across both the government and private sectors.

The new service will allow businesses to perform secure identity verification and data transfer through the scanning of QR codes. This service could help banks and financial services companies, as well as charity organizations as a form of sharing the necessary details with these organizations, which can also save time and effort.

The NDI was identified as one of five platforms the Singapore Government will develop to meet the outcomes stated in the Digital Government Blueprint, which was unveiled last year. Other platforms include Singapore Government Technology Stack, Smart Nation Sensor Platform (SNSP), Moments of Life (MOL) and Adaptive Digital Workplace.

GovTech was also working on a technology stack that would enable public-sector agencies to develop and launch digital services efficiently and securely. The agency claimed that this product would be a digital backbone of “reusable, interoperable, and scalable” microservices, and the tech stack would function alongside with the increased use of commercial cloud and cloud-native applications to allow public-sector agencies to quickly build digital services for both citizens and businesses.

Also, a nationwide sensor platform would further enhance situational awareness through the collection, sharing, and analysis of data and help government agencies provide more pre-emptive and responsive services. The “Lamppost-as-a-Platform” pilot will begin sometime between October and December in Geylang and the one-north business park under the Smart Nation Sensor Platform (SNSP). This pilot will help to evaluate the feasibility of using lampposts to deliver connectivity and power various sensors.

In its statement, GovTech also mentioned that citizen satisfaction with government digital services (rating of 5 and above on a scale of 6) had increased from 73 percent to 78 percent, while overall business satisfaction with such services grew from 64 percent to 69 percent during the same timeframe. The findings were part of an annual survey to assess the top 20 digital government services in Singapore, where 1,500 citizens and 1,600 businesses were interviewed respectively.

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