eID-Me began as part of Ontario’s Small Business Innovation Challenge (SBIC) in response to the Digital Identity Program problem statement issued by the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services. The SBIC program was delivered by Ontario Centres of Excellence on behalf of the Government of Ontario.
Bluink Ltd. developed eID-Me with the Ontario Government in partnership with Crypto4A, Canadian POS, and Carleton University. eID-Me will be ready for pilot deployments in 2019.
eID-Me is not a replacement for Ontario identity cards. eID-Me is an electronic digital identity that can be used for logging into online services or for use in offline face-to-face scenarios, and so it can contain your identity card information and more. Depending on the service provider, eID-Me can be used instead of an identity card (e.g., proof of age).
eID-Me information is encrypted on your smartphone and bound to your phone's authentication methods (e.g., passcode and biometric). The only way to access this information is by unlocking your phone. The eID-Me app can also be configured to auto-lock after a period of time, and you can set individual identity information to require reauthentication. Unlocking the app or using one of those protected pieces of identity information will require that you authenticate to your phone.
Instead of handing over your driver’s license card or phone, the officer could use his mobile device to send a request to your phone for your driver information. You will see their request, and you choose the information you send to the officer’s mobile device. In another example, if you’re buying beer at LCBO, the cashier uses the point of sale system to send a request to your phone for your age and photo. You always see who is making a request and what information is being requested, and you always choose what information you share.
If you lose your smartphone, there are a couple of things to know. First your eID-Me identity information will be protected by your phone’s authentication methods (e.g., passcode and biometric). Provided you have such methods enabled, your data will remain safe. Second, if your smartphone is really lost, you will need to re-register for an eID-Me identity on a new phone.
You can register eID-Me on multiple phones. You also have the option to revoke or disable the identity on your old phone.
eID-Me will be available on iOS and Android. The specific versions will be announced at a later date.
Provided eID-Me has been commercialized and adopted, you will be able to register for eID-Me online directly from your smartphone provided there is enough identity proofing information that can be verified. If not, you can always register for eID-Me face-to-face at a ServiceOntario centre. More details will be available once eID-Me is ready for release.
eID-Me will be ready for pilot deployments in 2019. Public release will be announced at a later date if the solution is adopted by the Ontario Government.