Closing the digital divide

Digital and traditional identity credentials work very differently. However, both work to demonstrate your identity and allow you to access services.

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Your identity, no matter how you use it

Your identity is still your identity, whether you use it online, over the counter or on the phone.

The NSW Government is committed to ensuring that the standards governing how personal information is collected, used, stored and shared are consistent.

Customers can expect the same level of customer service, privacy, security and protection no matter which way they choose to interact with the NSW Government.

It is important to look at identity holistically. Treating digital identity differently can lead to unintended ‘gaps’ in how it is handled. It could make customer identities less safe or make it harder to provide excellent customer service.

By developing digital identity products and solutions from a strong and consistent policy foundation, the NSW Government can streamline the way resources are invested in identity products and service delivery.

It also means that strong privacy, audit, compliance and governance systems are put in place to make sure identity information is being handled appropriately at all times.

Ensuring fair and equal access to identity for all

Treating identity equally across both service delivery pathways (traditional and digital) means that people who don’t want to, or can’t use digital pathways don’t have to. This is important because not everyone in the community has access to or can capably use digital devices, such as smartphones, that allow them to access government services online.

Vulnerable groups often rely on the government for support. They include:

  • people with disability, mental health conditions or health conditions
  • young people and older people
  • people living in remote or regional areas
  • people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples
  • people recently released from prison.

It is essential that these groups can access government services easily. In some cases, digital service delivery can assist people to get help more quickly. In other cases, however, digital service delivery and identity products could see vulnerable groups get left behind due to a lack of access to services.

As such, the NSW Government is committed to making sure paper-based identity products and service pathways are just as good as digital ones.

The NSW Government is leading the way in closing the digital divide in identity by working towards equality in both policy and access.

The NSW Government is treating identity equally across digital and traditional service delivery pathways
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