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Australia to “actively explore” a national digital ID system

Australia’s digital and data ministers from the federal government (Commonwealth), and six states and territories agreed to “actively explore” a national digital identification system.

Over the past six years, the federal government has spent about $450 million on a digital identification system, but has been delayed by a lack of legislation to expand the system into territories, states, and the private sector.

Per a statement released after a meeting, the ministers are “actively exploring” a national digital ID system, which has been discussed in previous meetings.

“Ministers agreed to actively explore adopting a national digital identity ecosystem. All governments are working closely to turn this commitment into tangible benefits for all Australians,” the communiqué, circulated by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, said.

“This whole-of-economy solution would deliver significant economic benefits for Australia and support Australia’s vision to be a leading digital economy and society by 2030.

“Ministers also noted the critical importance of interoperability and mutual recognition of digital credentials.”

In previous meetings, the ministers said they had agreed to “work towards,” and “discuss opportunities” of a national digital ID system.

It is believed that a Commonwealth legislation to expand the system is in the draft stage and is yet to be introduced to parliament.


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