Canadian Bankers Association Makes Case for Aadhaar-style Digital ID

Canadian Bankers Association Makes Case for Aadhaar-style Digital ID

The Canadian banking sector’s leading business association is calling for the creation of a digital identity system for use in the nation’s financial services.

Founded toward the end of 1891, the Canadian Bankers Association is an integral position in the discourse between the country’s banks and government authorities. And it has published a new video and a white paper, entitled “Canada’s Digital ID Future – A Federated Approach”, laying out the case for a digital identity program in the country.

The CBA points to benefits in cost savings, fraud reduction, enhanced privacy for Canadians, and improved regulatory compliance, among others. And it points to digital identity initiatives elsewhere in the world as examples that Canada could emulate: Estonia is lauded for its implementation of smart ID cards and digital signatures, while India is highlighted for Aadhaar, its groundbreaking biometric national ID program that now has 95 percent of the country’s population enrolled.

“Canada will need to follow the same underlying path as both of those countries – it will need to build a legislative/regulatory environment that enables a digital ID system to be built, accessible to all, and that empowers industry and government to accept the digital ID as it comes to market,” the CBA’s report asserts.

The white paper, and its accompanying video, strongly signals that stakeholders in the Canadian financial services sector are looking to pursue this kind of digital ID program with support from the government and the private sector; and that biometric technology could play an important role in this project going forward.