Private sector igovt use presents policy problems

Private organisations come and go, says Internal Affairs chief executive

Government could be involved in some difficult policy decisions if the igovt identity information management system is too appealing to private industry, says Internal Affairs chief executive Brendan Boyle.

In response to a question from the floor following his presentation at last week’s Managing Identity conference, he agreed that large private organisations such as banks could equip themselves to recognise the igovt identity credential as an aid to their business.

If that is so, said the questioner, the private companies would then want to have a say in the future development of the igovt credential — a potential “NZ Inc” credential — and its use. To accommodate such influence “would be a significant policy decision”, Boyle said.

“Private organisations come and go,” he added. “Until recently, few people would have imagined a world without Bear Stearns.”

But government is enduring, he said, and has more need of a stable identity framework to handle its interaction with citizens.

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