The government has been looking closely at how the new connected world can enable improved, more straightforward access to government services for UK citizens. It has also been looking closely at online security; how it can best handle people’s personal information sensitively and provide the reassurance that their data is safe when they enter it online.
Making it all easier and more secure
The entry point to local and national government services – the way you got in and were asked to prove who you were – has traditionally been through the Government Gateway. You might already have used it. If you have, then you may well be one of the 65% of people who say that, getting access to the government services you need today is a bit tedious. The multi-stage approach to proving who you are on the Government Gateway was appropriate when the system was launched some years ago, but now it needs a refresh. The Government Gateway scheme is now being gradually replaced by GOV.UK Verify, which aims to provide a faster and more secure service, for most of its previous functions.
Providing better digital service
For about 15 years this entry system – where you sign in and prove you are who you say you are – worked how it was supposed to, but the world around us has changed.
How we connect and interact with online services has changed. Now we thrive on getting things done quicker, in a secure online environment, with far less hassle:
We all expect faster responses when we’re online. We demand easier access, and less fuss. Technology has made it all possible. You can shop online, run your bank account online, book flights, arrange holidays, pay bills.
There’s no reason why your interactions with government services can’t be just as smooth and straightforward as they are with any other organisation you connect with online.
This is the main reason why the government has engaged with a range of leading technology firms.
Using external expert companies is going to make sure that the procedures you go through when you prove who you are at GOV.UK are always at the cutting edge of smart technology and that that latest advancements in secure online verification will always be freely available to people when they use the new Government services portal. This makes everything more straightforward.
Today we expect to achieve much more online. Our expectations of what should be able to do when we access Government service via the web is much more joined up.
We want straightforward access to the entitlements that are due to us (like tax credits or benefits) and when we need things from other Government departments (like a new passport or a visa) we expect the relationships we have already established with one aspect of Government to speed up our requests and help us get what we need faster. The new GOV.UK Verify process enables you to register and prove who you are once and after that, never have to jump through the same hoops again.
In a nutshell, this is what UK GOV Verify has been designed and built to offer – simple and secure access; taking the hassle out of using the numerous services you call upon through various government departments – from passport renewals to benefits and tax returns through to registering births, deaths, and marriages. All these things have to be done – now they’re just going to be easier to do.