Australian Taxation Office defaults agent log in to myGovID from Saturday

AUSkey will be binned come March.

mygovid.png

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) will be switching its default online login option for agents on Saturday from the existing AUSkey to the federal government's myGovID.

Users will still be able to use AUSkey until late March, before the service is fully superseded by myGovID.

See also: Four years ago no one would know if we had an outage: ATO

AUSkey is essentially a login that identifies an individual when they use participating government online services, on behalf of a business.

myGovID is the Australian government's digital identity credential -- handled by the ATO. It's like the 100 point ID check but on a smart device, and it allows citizens to have their identity verified so they can access government services using that verified identity, rather than being verified continually by each Commonwealth entity.

It became available as an app through the Apple and Google Play stores after it was quietly released in Apple's app store in June while the Android version was released in October.

A myGovID will need to be created before accessing ATO services.

"If you haven't already, the best time to get your myGovID is now," the ATO wrote.

The DTA said that by the end of 2018-19, there had been 11,785 downloads of its myGovID iOS smartphone app and 6,676 digital identities created.

To prove an identity on myGovID, individuals need to enter their full name, date of birth, and email address. Also required is two of either: an Australian passport, a state or territory-issued driver's licence, birth certificate, or Medicare card.

"If you are the principal authority for your practice, you can use your myGovID to login into the Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM) website and link your myGovID to your practice Australian business number (ABN)," the ATO added of its new process.

"This will allow you to establish access permissions for your practice.

See also: Why Australia is quickly developing a technology-based human rights problem (TechRepublic)  

"Principal authorities will need to ensure all staff that need access to online services for agents have set up their personal myGovID."

Speaking previously on replacing AUSkey with myGovID, Digital Transformation Agency Assistant Secretary for Digital Identity and myGov Jonathon Thorpe said the concerns individuals have with being verified by government extend to organisations, too.

"It's a PKI credential, it's been around for a very long time," he said in August.

"What we found, apart from some UX irritants, was a whole bunch of fraud-related issues that were happening,

"The way it works at the moment is that you authenticate as an organisation, seldom do we know who is behind it."

According to Thorpe, it is the strongest identity proofing that can digitally be performed at the moment.  

RELATED COVERAGE

More privacy conscious and not Australia Card 2.0: DTA defends digital identity play

The agency spent its entire Senate Estimates appearance explaining what exactly is digital identity and why Australians don't really know about its existence.

Canberra wants to open digital identity system to commercial sector

The federal government has opened discussions on how the commercial sector can participate in Australia's digital identity system.

Nearly 7,000 Australians have created a myGovID

By the end of 2018-19, the Digital Transformation Agency said there had been 11,785 downloads of its myGovID iOS smartphone app.