Submission on the Digital Identity System

05 December 2023

The Business Council of Australia supports the government implementing an economy-wide digital identity system.

Properly set up, the digital identity system will be fundamental to lifting privacy across Australia – providing government and businesses a way to positively identify an individual without requiring the collection of personally identifiable information. It will also be a critical enabler for a modern seamless economy.  It will make it easier for Australians to verify who they are without having to manage a cumbersome set of cards or numbers.

Following recent criminal attacks on Australian businesses, it has become clear reform is needed. As it stands, Australians currently have little choice but to use documents like passports and driver’s licences to establish their identity. Businesses and governments are required – often by legislation – to collect and hold this information.

Australia must move beyond this. Digital identity will be a chance to lift privacy outcomes while making it simpler, easier, and safer for Australians to prove who they are.

For Australia to fully reap these benefits, Government must set out a clear timeline for when businesses and citizens can expect to use digital identity in the private sector, not just for government services.

This must also be combined with an urgent review of all legal provisions requiring retention of personal information, with reform aimed at not only harmonisation of the requirements but also enabling digital identity in place of identity documents.

You can read our full submission here. 


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