Event Recording

The Future of Digital ID in South Africa


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Yes, thanks. And thanks for the opportunity. And I'm really delighted to really be part of this conference today. I'll just talk more about, you know, the future of digital IDs in South Africa. And I also share the developments, my experience, and also my journey has been a digital ID fellow without wasting more time, let me go through the presentation. So just what I said earlier is that I had a experience in researching about for technologies. I've been quite busy with been an advocate for youth entrepreneurship. I see it in youth boss and for in South Africa. And I've also been a keynote speaker and panel participate in conferences like this. And I've also been part of UHS youth forum, where I co lead as a business and entrepreneurship chair. So in terms of digital ID, and it's one of the growing topic across the world, as we all know, but in South Africa, the subject is barely new.
And in South Africa and across Africa, although in South Africa, we are trying to really kickstart the journey of digital ID. And, but we are still on the initial stages. One of the major concern in South Africa is that fraud is one of the biggest concerns of also taking the initiative, even in my PhD and during topic that really focuses on fraud because every day you hear that a lot of people are actually victims of fraud. And also with that fronted of the fourth industrial revolution, that now that everything is becoming online and also with the trends of COVID 19, it has accelerated a lot of challenges because now everything is done online and fraud stars have gained attraction. In terms of, you know, you speak about 40 length ads, such as credit card and other digital mechanisms that for loans are being used daily. So one of the tasks that I was given when I was awarded the fellowship with Yoti, which is a digital ID company that is based in the UK with footprint in India and other parts of the world are, was to study the effectiness of a smart ID card in, in fighting digital fraud.
And what we have discovered is that with the current smart ID card, there is related frauds that have not per se have declined. And we've also looked at new technological developments that might be available in order to further boost the securities of this cards. Because one of the challenges is that people used to loan these cards and used to give it to people who commit fraudulent activities. So really wanted to understand what can we do in order to ensure that the governments can improve the services using the smart ID card, which is the official identity document in, in South Africa. So following to get to the, where we get to get to the heart of the problem, we first had to do what we call awareness on digital ID, because most of the challenges that we face in terms of introduction of digital ID is that a lot of people don't really understand what digital ID is and that you found that there is, has also led to the problem because digital ID is a new concept in South Africa.
And with acceleration of COVID 19, we have seen that the government is started starting to embrace the digital transformation. And this has also led to an introduction of vaccine passport that is now digitalized. So we've also looked into writing blocks and also I've worked with a company called brown biometric update and other local newspapers in order for us to reach to people and stakeholders. And also I participated in conferences where we held dialogues about the prospects of digital identity in the country where we spoke to ministries. And this has led us to really gather the enough insights and data across the country to understand what is the landscape of digital identity in the country. So one of the key things before we go further is to understand where does South Africa come into when it comes to digital ID? So we've, we've came here from a long term.
We've started with what we call a Damas, which was full back then in, during the upper eight era. And then we've moved across to this book and also told the last book that we are trying to face, which is the Greenberg coded ID book. So with the green park go ID book, this is where the problem came because this was easily manipulated. You can see in the picture, we have, you have your ID, which is your dating ID number. And then you also have this picture, which anyone can easily take out the picture and put another person's picture. So this I, green ID book was one of the key challenges that the, the government on the ministry of Homer first faced, because a lot of people did not utilize it correctly. And thrust us took advantage with the current challenges that government resorted to creating what we now use and what we now call the smart ID card, which was created in 2018 and beyond with a smart ID card.
The intention was that how can we ensure that we make an ID card that is impermeable an ID card that is not easy to duplicate, and that is secure. And that can be not, that will not be POS to, to dis fraud. And when we are looking at the main thing of our identity card is that it's being utilized for many things. We use it for social grants. We use it for IEC education, healthcare loans, and financing, business, and financing more related to what the other world is being used on ID four. So in terms of my finding is that I found that even though he introduced as much ID card on its own is not effective to fight digital fraud. And because in South Africa, we have realized that there is an impact of limited access to essential services from governments. And because of that limit access to essential services, a lot of fraud, fraudulent activities does take place.
And we've seen that digital identity will be pivotal in fighting digital fraud. And we have seen the increase of level of our awareness around the consequences of ID theft, and we have engaged with all groups, including marginalized communities and where we collectively identify mechanisms to introduce scalable, trustworthy privacy and transparent user friendly digital ID systems. And we looked at creating one dialogue conversation with a wide digital identity could be visible. So in the study, I've recommended that digital identity will be for South Africa, must be built on block blockchain tech. And we've seen that numerous banks, such ASA also support the adopting of digital ID that is based on blockchain technology, because they believe that it can CLA down the abuse of personal data and can Cub identity theft and enable an easier access to financial services. So with the study, this has led to the breadth of what he called an NIS.
So with that digital identity has been identified as something that has the potential to meet the evolving needs of south Africans. And that can contribute indirectly to us addressing the high unemployment rate. Most of the cases that we have is that unemployment rate currently sits around 40 something upwards, and it is increasingly driven crossly in terms of income in qualities and structural that are phased by the country. So with this, we are trying to build a new biometric digital identities system that is currently being developed by South Africa. So we are believing that we feel we can enhance access to a variety of services. This will enable people in all other, for foreign nations, living in the country to have an access, an easier system that can be allowed, cannot be integrated. So the ID system was expected to be in place by much 24, and we want to utilize it to trigger economic transformation for the country.
But we also want to ensure that the security and citizens is being prioritized. And the most of the key things like I've mentioned is that the NIS is being developed to reduce incident of fraud, as well as boost digital governments and business. So what, with one of the key things that we also had to encounter is the legislative requirements, the department of home affairs, which is the DHA, we, they are in the process of implementing this single integrated source of biomed graphic and biometric information to make digital service a delivery reality reality. So we are also governed governed by an identity management policy, which is an updated in identification act that was widely influenced by the digital identity. So now we also looked into the system that we under the system, we want to ensure that all processes, the S of best marriages and death certificates will be digitalized and secured instead of using physical copies.
We now want to move all the services to a digital platform that can be secure, where citizen can also do most of these activities online in a secure environment. So our internal goal with an is, is we want to replace the current national population register where the country's 10 year transformation and plan will be enabled by robust, integrated backend systems and modern network infrastructure, which in turn will enable all front end process and alignment with all related government systems. So again, the most important thing that we are utilizing digital ID is to ensure it integration whether new digital system will enable digital process for issuing birth and certification, as I've mentioned. And once we make sure that we use modified screening procedures at EGS and at a higher length volumes of point entries and frequent travelers, especially in the airport, because this is where we had challenges.
And also we want to now move into a single platform that will be adjusts of allowing visas to be more accessible, where we now can also allow people to visit our country and with the use of digital identity that is trying to, that is also trying to shape up quite well. So this is the structure that we've came about in terms of the digital, where we want to build a single integrated platform. You'll see that we also have a national identification system, which is the NIS where business and government and all persons can also integrate in terms of domestic border environment and offshore where the single initial identification system can provide instant access where access can be in a secure environment. So in short, the time has come for consumers investors and the private and the public sectors to collectively work, to achieve the common goal of enabled a robust, secure, and trusted digital identity for South Africa and realize the potential to generate economic value as well as resolving challenges, such as inclusion, which is one of the key challenges, because we are one of the countries with a high inequality rate. And we believe that when we can do the Analyst correctly, some of these challenges can be reduced. So for more information, in terms of my work, in terms of detail ID, you can visit this website here. I've shared some of the work in terms with what that I've done with T and is more available. Even my research is more available for more detail information, without wasting more time will leave it here for further questions and other discussions. Thank you.

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