Landonline part two: digital certs for all

Users of Landonline will be required to use digital certificates even if they are only conducting title searches, once the second stage, known as CRS2, comes on stream.

Users of Landonline will be required to use digital certificates even if they are only conducting title searches, once the second stage, known as CRS2, comes on stream.

Currently, those using Land Information NZ’s online information and transaction system to search titles — the major application provided by Landonline’s first stage — does not require authentication by digital certificate, but CRS2 will enable users to “lodge” new records on to the database from their own PCs. Because all will be working within the same system, users all over the country will need to purchase and use a digital certificate from the time the first CRS2 pilot goes online.

The third quarter of this year is now the deadline for the beginning of the CRS2 pilot. This has slipped slightly from the “mid-year” date promised last year.

The universal use of digital certificates comes at a time when the health sector and the master e-government project run from the State Services Commission emphasise their preference for a flexible attitude to security. Users who are only searching non-sensitive information are unlikely to be required to go through the complexities of maintaining and using the certificates (see Citizen ID ideas sought).

The CRS2 pilot is very likely to be in Canterbury, says Linz spokesman Mike Bodnar, but a definite decision had not yet been made mid-last week.

The Landonline team has produced a training video, which includes material on how to use the digital certificate, but Bodnar suggests it will not be a difficult aspect of the system.

“The certificate will be installed on the user’s PC, and it will be like the warrant of fitness on a car; you won’t need to pay any real attention to it until it comes up for renewal.”

The users will be charged for their digital certificates, but the charging scales for day-to-day use will set the fee for online lodgement lower than that for a paper transaction. This is intended to encourage use of the online route.

Landonline’s efforts are being keenly watched by the SSC’s e-government unit, whose head, Brendan Boyle, appears on the introductory video.

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