Yoti, Post Office and Lloyds digital IDs recognised by UK govt
Credit: izzuanroslan / Shutterstock

Digital ID took a step forward in the UK this week after the country’s three most prominent apps were approved by the Proof of Age Standards Scheme (PASS).

Yoti ID, Post Office EasyID and Lloyds Bank Smart ID are now recognised by the UK government as legitimate proof of identification. The apps will feature the PASS hologram from now on, demonstrating legitimacy for merchants.

These IDs will be able to be used for a variety of purposes, including purchase of age restricted products and services online, although not in licensed premises. Products covered under this category include energy drinks, vapes, tobacco, lottery tickets, games, fireworks, medicine and alcohol.

However, the IDs can be used for entering gambling premises such as casinos, slot machine arcades and retail betting shops. Another significant use is proving right to work and accessing age-related travel discounts on trains and buses.

Robin Tombs, CEO of Yoti, said: “More UK businesses can now accept our Digital IDs to reduce the risk of fake IDs, increase compliance and improve the customer experience. In the UK, over four million people have already downloaded a Digital ID app. 

“This is a strong sign that people are ready to embrace reusable Digital IDs and want a more secure, private and convenient way to prove who they are. We’re delighted that our Digital IDs are now government certified for both proof of identity and proof of age.”

Securing PASS accreditation for digital IDs is not an easy process, with PASS assessing the IDs against a strict application and evaluation process. The purpose of this is to ensure the Challenge 25 policy, by which all UK businesses are required to ID check anyone who appears under the age of 25, can be upheld.

Digital IDs are becoming increasingly accepted across a number of countries, with Yoti asserting that the documents are a “convenient way for young people to prove their age from their phone, removing the need to carry around or show physical documents”.

The company has also cited the quality and availability of fake IDs, which has created pressure on the retail sector that Yoti believes digital IDs can ease. 

There is another challenge to consider here, though, that being the potential for deepfake digital IDs to be created, although crafting a fake PASS hologram via AI could be a challenging task for fraudsters.

Regardless, the PASS approval of Yoti’s, the Post Office’s and Lloyds’ digital IDs show that progress is being made regarding the assets development and acceptance. 

The potential of digital ID has been noted at varying levels, such as by stakeholders in specific industries like gambling, those in broader sectors such as finance and banking, and at the legislative level in the EU