Your smartphone as an ID document
– a plausible or dangerous solution?
Have you ever ran into a surprise road check and realised that you didn’t have your ID, such as your license and registration, with you? It’s a pretty bad feeling, right? Those types of uncomfortable situations could be easily solved in the future.
At the end of the last year, the Austrian National Printing Office in Vienna introduced its latest creation – the “My Identity App” – as a more convenient way of carrying around your ID.
CREDIT TO MY IDENTITY APP
Pros and Cons
Just like movie tickets and plane tickets, personal ID documents are going digital. With this app, it will be possible to identify yourself directly on your smartphone. You can store your travel documents, personal ID, drivers license, etc. right on your device, so this app acts like an all-in-one source for your most important records. Personal data won’t be displayed directly on your smartphone but instead in the cloud. In order to have full access to your documents, the app will ask you to verify your identity using biometric verification, for example a fingerprint sensor, but this is only possible on newer phones. The Austrian National Printing Office stresses the need for digital safety, which is why they are implementing so many precautionary methods to ensure that none of your personal data is stolen. Only then can everyone reap the benefits of these technological advancements. They have securely built their MIA app to ensure the reliability and protection of your private data. In addition, another benefit is that the users can choose just how much information they’re willing to give. For example, if you’re asked for your ID at a club, you can choose to only show your age and nothing else! Additional information, such as your address or country of birth, do not have to be shown at all.
Despite the app’s level of creativity, there has been some criticism about the app’s overall sense of security. The main concern is that unauthorised individuals may be able to hack or break into the cloud and steal a considerable amount of private user information, which could misused in the future.
It’s hard to say if, and how quickly, the MIA will be implemented. First of all, legal and data privacy costs have to be considered in each and every country. Furthermore, the app has to be reviewed and validated to guarantee it is viable and safe in every aspect, which could take an unknown amount of time to complete.
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