The idea of digital or mobile IDs has been around for a while, but now the concept is turning into a reality—or nightmare. Not surprisingly, Utah’s new mobile ID has many people concerned.
Simply put, the Get Mobile ID, is a digital ID stored in your smartphone that can carry all sorts of information and it will be able to be used at banks, grocery stores, liquor stores, car rental agencies and many other locations.
According to Get Mobile, the digital ID it’s a highly-secure app designed to put the user “in charge of with whom you want to share your identity data, when, and what information to disclose.” However, we’re still not exactly sure what data will be required in these IDs.
Recently, a photo showing a list of items that will carry the mobile ID, has gone viral. The list includes vaccine records, spending, voting and even social scoring. The photo is most probably a fake, but the idea is not. China has already been using social scoring for a long time. Today, all Chinese citizens need to have their face scanned in order to buy a smartphone, which works as a digital ID. Having a low score can make your life miserable.
Utah, however, is not the first State to use mobile IDs. Louisiana was among the first ones to go digital. The LA Wallet, developed by ID Scan, can be used in Apple and Android phones. In 2016, the Louisiana law Act 625, made the LA Wallet accectable by the Louisiana State Police, Louisiana Office of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATC) and other locations statewide. And on Dec. 22, 2020, it was made equivalent to the physical license or ID.
One of the differences between Louisiana and Utah’s mobile ID is that the latter is said to be fully compliant with a new standard for digital ID carried out by the International Organization of Standardization. In other words, Utah’s mobile ID will be regulated by an international body who will dictate how this ID is supposed to be. Potentially, in the near future, someone holding a Utah’s digital ID could travel abroad without a passport, and perhaps even by just showing up and smiling in front of a biometrics control at the airport.
[Also read: China’s Surveillance Technology]
For example, ID Scan, Louisiana’s mobile ID developer, has already set in place a face recognition system—although, it’s still not used in Louisiana. On the other hand, Utah’s mobile ID developer, Scytáles (a partner of GET Group North America), with their SpeedCapture platform, seems to be getting ready for face recognition technology. Their SpeedCapture Kiosk can already capture your fingerprints, iris, signature (pressure sensitive), palm and vein.
Scytales is a Swedish is a technological company specialized in the development of mobile drivers licenses and mobile IDs. Scytales has also developed a Vaccine Passport (Digital Green Pass) which can be used in all European Member States.
Idemia is a multinational company headquartered in France that sells facial recognition and other biometric identification products and software to private companies and governments. It’s one of the biggest AI companies in the world and is participating with the United Nations Organization to give everyone an identity by 2030.
In 2019, Idemia deployed the OSIA interface alongside NGOs (including Caritas) and the World Bank in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The objective was to “identify 2.4 million children and produce 600,000 birth certificates.”
The consortium led by CIVIPOL supports the ambitious goal set out by the United Nations General Assembly “One ID for all by 2030”.