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Digital identities: advancing digital societies in Asia Pacific

GSMA Intelligence, in collaboration with the GSMA’s Asia Pacific regional team, is today publishing the third in a series of reports focused on efforts to accelerate the implementation of digital societies in Asia Pacific. Alongside mobile connectivity, the report underscores digital identity as the cornerstone in creating digital societies across the region and how policymakers can support that development and the realisation of a various socioeconomic benefits.

In today’s online world, the capacity to prove you are who you say you are in a digital form is fundamental for, among other things, electoral participation, fulfilling educational opportunities, and receiving welfare payments.

In Asia Pacific, digital identity is a priority in lower-income countries as a primary source of identification and as a means to foster digital, financial and social inclusion. Meanwhile, in higher-income countries, digital identity enables the transformation of traditional commerce and services into more efficient and convenient e-commerce and e-services.

Further, given the increasingly cross-border nature of digital activity, enabling citizens to participate and transact fully online requires governments to collaborate with mobile operators and the wider private sector to develop and deploy scalable digital identity solutions that protect users and keep personal information private and secure.

The report analyses the digital society initiatives underway in eight Asia Pacific countries (Australia, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore and Thailand), with a further focus on each nation’s programmes for digital identity, where relevant. Each market is then assessed on its levels of connectivity, digital identity, digital citizenship, digital lifestyle and digital commerce. These markets sit on an improving scale from emerging to transition to advanced, reflecting the diverse nature of the region.

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