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Digital Identity New Zealand

Regulation, Regulation Regulation Everywhere | May Newsletter

Kia ora,

Digital ID has been increasingly in the news lately, as Australia begins to ramp up its systems pilots development following the passing of legislation. In Aotearoa there’s been a lot happening too as Minister Collins opened this year’s Summit where DINZ was on stage later.

Contained within the avalanche of consultations posted in March and early April, was the second revision of the rules that support NZ’s own Digital Identity Trust Framework (DISTF) Act. The Department of Internal Affairs(DIA) presented to a packed virtual lunchtime audience on it earlier this month. Digital Identity NZ’s DISTF Working Group, comprising both private and public sector participants, responded in detail, reflecting the overall message that, despite good intentions to improve security, data protection, and privacy to reduce online fraud, there are alot of moving parts for stakeholders to consider. The fact that it is ‘opt-in’ for stakeholders and that alternative/non-digital channels should always be offered to people and organisations because it is not compulsory, should help provide time to become comfortable and confident with it. 

The DINZ Biometrics Special Interest Group made a deeply considered submission on the Office of the Privacy Commissioner’s (OPC) exposure draft of a Code of Practice for biometrics under the Privacy Act 2020. We continue to assert that a code is premature with potential for unintended consequences, whereas well drafted, clear guidance at the outset will deliver better outcomes for all New Zealanders. As if the above two were not enough, the CDR/CPD bill is set to be introduced to Parliament, which also has a critical digital identity component.

Since the CPD and the Biometrics Code (should it be implemented) are mandatory for specific digital ID service providers undertaking particular identity-related processes, whereas the DISTF is opt-in, I sense that the weight of regulatory burden will result in tough choices for the industry in this small market, despite the good intentions of all stakeholders. In my view, we’ll have to be conscious of the potential for market stall. Could the CDR/CPD bill help unify our data and streamline our sector and service laws to better suit our market size?

Meanwhile, sectors continue to analyse the role of digital identity and the potential to operate schemes within the DISTF, with financial services leading the way. This is demonstrated so clearly by the Commerce Commission’s consultation on personal banking, which highlights the importance of robust digital identification for frictionless bank-switching and faster progress towards Open Banking.

With the above very much in mind, Payments NZ and DINZ co-hosted a highly productive investigative sprint earlier this month across its combined membership. We brought together experts, representatives from the private, public and NGO sectors, and heard inspiring presentations from Australia’s ConnectID and our very own MATTR.

The research and education sector have been deeply engaged with digital identity for many years and continue to lead on many fronts. Learn more at our lunchtime webinar on Thursday 13 June simply titled ‘Digital Identity, Higher Education, Aotearoa’, when DINZ member Middleware showcases fellow DINZ member University of Auckland.

The following week, DINZ and FinTechNZ members with a general understanding of ‘digital cash’ should diary note 20 June for a ‘town hall’ styled dynamic submission with The Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Te Pūtea Matua on the criticalities (including digital ID) surrounding ‘digital cash’ – a Central Bank Digital Currency as a potential alternative to physical cash. 

DINZ and FinTechNZ members who are familiar with ‘digital cash’ should watch for details about a town hall meeting on Thursday, June 20, with The Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Te Pūtea Matua, discussing a potential Central Bank Digital Currency as an alternative to physical cash. The meeting will cover important topics such as digital ID.

To close this month’s newsletter I’d like to give a big shout-out for the Digital Trust Hui Taumata. Please get your tickets early on the Members 2-4-1 super saver. At the time of writing, our sponsor list has grown to include AuthsignalJNCTNMiddlewareNEC NZPayments NZWorldline and Xebo as well as DINZ showcasing its own thought leadership.

With more sponsors and more speakers committing every week, this event is sure to be ‘simply the best’.

Ngā mihi

Colin Wallis
Executive Director, Digital Identity NZ

Read full news here: Regulation, Regulation Regulation Everywhere | May Newsletter

Digital Identity New Zealand A purpose driven, inclusive, membership funded organisation, whose members have a shared passion for the opportunities that digital identity can offer. Digital Identity NZ supports a sustainable, inclusive and trustworthy digital future for all New Zealanders.