South Korea to roll out digital national ID cards that citizens can store on their mobile phone

Illustration of woman using phone for digital ID for multiple access in South Korea
BLOCKCHAIN: The plans would enable citizens to store a digital version of their official ID on their phone

Residents of South Korea will soon be able to store a digital ID in an app on their mobile phone and use it to verify their identity across a wide range of use cases including accessing government services, healthcare, finance and transport.

The digital ID solution proposed by South Korea’s Digital Government Agency will allow residents to store a digital version of their physical resident registration card on their mobile device which will be secured using blockchain technology.

Using decentralised blockchain technology will mean that the Korean government will not have access to the information stored on an individual user’s smartphone, including details of where, when and how their digital ID has been used, according to a Bloomberg report.

The DGA plans to roll out digital IDs in 2024 and “seeks their adoption by 45 million citizens within two years”, the report adds.

South Korea’s Ministry of the Interior and Safety and the Korean National Police Agency began trialling mobile driving licences as a step towards the introduction of other state-issued digital ID documents in February.

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