| 4. In which ways is the initiative creative and innovative?
The action plan for development of the Validation Gateway was developed in accordance with the Identity Authority’s Project Management Methodology:
(1) PLANNING: 2004-2009
The roll out of Smart ID Cards to the whole population and the development of a National Validation Gateway to access data and services was fundamental to achieving the Emirate ID’s 2010-2013 Strategic Plan - development of infrastructure for personal identity verification and digital credentials verification, in addition to supporting e-government projects.
(2) OBJECTIVES: 2010
To deliver a seamless and integrated validation experience, the ID Authority broke down the objectives for the initiative by stakeholder. (A) SERVICE PROVIDERS – both public and private - needed a solution that increased data integrity, reduced the need for paper documents, decreased fraud, lowered resource need, and raised revenues. (B) CARD HOLDERS needed the processing time for services reduced, elimination of paper bureaucracy, and a reduction in the number of cards and passwords they needed to access services.
(3) SOLUTION DEVELOPMENT: 2010-2012
To create a shared solution that met everyone’s needs, a large-scale data gathering process was undertaken. (A) SERVICE PROVIDER DATA included number of customers by year, day hour. Time taken to verify an ID. Number of staff needed. Number of identity thefts and their cost. Number of paper sheets printed and photocopied per year. Average spend per customer on services. % or errors in transactions. Time taken to resolve errors. (B) CARD HOLDER DATA included number of times ID is needed to be checked a year. Cost of travel for having ID checked. Waiting times to have ID checked. Number of time customer needs to copy ID Cost of paper etc.
Business analysts assessed the data to engineer enhanced authentication procedures that could be securely implemented through an easy to use National Validation Gateway using National ID Cards, to:
(i) Verify a person’s ID remotely – removing the need for Card Holders to make multiple journeys to access a service, and reducing the burden on Service Providers to provide ample waiting space, facilities and staff.
(ii) Enable remote digital signing – allowing Card Holders to access services and undertake legally binding transactions more conveniently from work and home, whilst also enabling Service Providers to save time and money through reduced process steps.
(iii) Facilitate digital time-stamping – enabling both Card Holders and Service providers to keep an accurate record of the creation and modifications of their legally binding documents and transactions.
(4) IMPLEMENTATION AND BENEFITS REALISATION– 2012 - Present
The Gateway infrastructure was launched in 2012 in Abu Dhabi. The service was rolled out to all Government across the UAE and innovatively to private sector entities in the banking and telecommunications sector. A phased approach for on-boarding private sector providers enabled the agile refinement of services as lessons were learned. Roll-out included training, piloting and the production of a Gateway handbook in support of the Authority’s aim to strengthen communication channels with strategic partners and stakeholders at both Federal and Emirates levels.
By implementing the Gateway, the ID Authority delivered advanced value-added services that stimulate economic activity, boosting the overall global competitiveness of the UAE through increasing GDP, saving consumers and businesses time, lowering transport costs, reducing carbon footprint, and reducing ID theft.
(6) FUTURE PLANNING – On-going
In 2012, the ID Authority developed its new Strategic Plan for delivering the 2021 UAE Vision. The future focus for the National Gateway is on continuing to extend service enablement to both public and private sectors. On-going implementation of new functionalities include: mobile phone authentication and launch of various Emirates ID services including personal profile update service.
| 5. Who implemented the initiative and what is the size of the population affected by this initiative?
Following a detailed stakeholder mapping process, a broad cross-section of groups were involved in the planning and implementation phases:
(A) GOVERNMENT : Consulted with to ensure full conformity with existing initiatives and priorities:
* Emirates Federal eGovernment Authority
* Emirates Competitiveness Council
* Ministry of the Interior
* Ministry of Health
* Ministry of Finance
* Ministry of Social Affairs and Higher Education
* Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development
* Telecommunications Regulatory Authority
* Abu Dhabi Systems and Information Centre
* Abu Dhabi Police General Headquarters
* Abu Dhabi Education Council
* Abu Dhabi Emiratisation Council (Tawteen)
* Judicial Department – Abu Dhabi
(B) CARD HOLDERS: Prospective customers were consulted to ensure that development and deployment
underwent real-world testing:
* UAE Nationals
* Migrants and Residents
* Gulf Cooperation Council Nationals
(C) PRIVATE SECTOR SERVICE PROVIDERS: Consulted to ensure the easy integration of the Emirates ID system into their operations:
* Central Bank of the United Arab Emirates
* Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company
* Eimass- Electronic Identity Management and Security Solutions
* Emaratech Information Technology and e-Solution
* Daman National Health Insurance Company
* Abu Dhabi Health Services Company
(D) INDUSTRY EXPERTS: Closely involved to ensure that the Gateway reflected the highest international standards and benchmarks:
* British Standards Authority
* British Institute of Technology and e-Commerce
* Future Internet Company
(E) COMMUNITIES: Consulted to ensure that the Gateway garnered acceptance from a critical mass of users:
* Environmental Groups
* Women’s Groups
* Local Community Leadership
* Expat Organizations
* Disability Lobbies
(F) PARTNERS AND SERVICE PROVIDERS: Partners and Service Providers were consulted to provide outside expertise and perspectives:
* ID Management Specialists
* Technology and Web Design Companies
* Management and Operational Consultants
| 6. How was the strategy implemented and what resources were mobilized?
Resources for the National Verification Gateway implementation were deployed from within the EIDA talent pool and budget as a mission critical project in support of the Authority’s 2010-2013 strategy. The following specific resources were dedicated to the mobilisation of the project:
Within EIDA, a staff of 5 Senior Technology Managers was specifically deployed for the design, development and implementation of the Gateway. Internal personnel were supported by 10 external Technical Consultants from 2 different contractors, including technical developers, usability and integration testing and quality assurance professionals.
To facilitate the development of the National Validation Gateway infrastructure 7 full time technical resources were required.
The costs involved with implementing the Gateway included, but were not limited to:
* New systems implementation
* Resource training
* Ongoing maintenance
* Risk management associated with data security
The above resources were funded with an initial budget of 10 million AED ($3m) exclusive of personnel costs, technical costs and other expenses, and 16 million AED ($4m) inclusive of all work and additional development needs.
The budget was generated from the Emirates ID authority internal funds. Specifically, 5 million AED ($1.4m) were drawn from government funds while AED 11 MILLION ($3m) came from external revenue streams including fees from ID cards. In 2014, Federal Funding will cease and the Authority will be fully self-sustaining.
It is worth noting that the cost savings generated by the Gateway more than offset the infrastructure implementation costs. From a survey and study carried out following annual cost savings are estimated in UAE by the utilization of the National Validation Gateway Services:
*4.18 Billion AED from productivity and efficiency enhancement
*200 million AED from space reduction
*252 million AED in card and ID Costs
*121 million AED in paper and printing reduction
* And a staggering 10 Billion AED in customer savings
| 7. Who were the stakeholders involved in the design of the initiative and in its implementation?
The National Validation Gateway improves interoperability for the authentication and verification of identity between a wide range of PUBLIC and PRIVATE sector interactions. The following outputs were integral to the project’s success:
1. DELIVERY OF A TRUSTED VALIDATION INFRASTRUCTURE
From a technical standpoint, a major achievement was the creation of a shared validation infrastructure that provided a single access point for accessing e-services using the Emirates National ID Card. The development of the online Validation Gateway was only possible because, unlike any other ID document, the Emirates ID Card is registered and held by 100% of the population. The combination of a current and accurate population database, and the mass distribution of smart ID Cards containing biometric data, enables the Gateway to carry out identity authentication and verification in a completely secure, transparent and auditable manner.
2. IMPROVEMENT OF BUSINESS PROCESSES
The Validation Gateway enables organisations to authenticate and verify all their customers remotely using National ID Cards. This solution not only removes the costly need for organisations to issue their own identification cards, but it also saves money by drastically reducing customer authentication processing time, and lowering the number of administrative errors in customers details. The ability to use the ID Card for secure digital signing diminishes the need for paperwork, photocopying, creation of audit trails, and archiving. The combination of new business processes delivers significant time and cost savings, freeing organisations to reduce overheads and increase their capacity to roll out more e-services. Citizens in turn have a more simplified, convenient and satisfactory customer experience.
3. ESTABLISHED BASIS FOR PUBLIC-PRIVATE SECTOR INNOVATION
In support of enhanced public-private sector cooperation, the ID Authority opened up use of the National Validation Gateway to non-governmental providers of assured identity data, e.g. banks. The use of technical standards such as Security Assurance Mark Up Language (SAML) enables public sector services to work interoperably with the private sector providing seamless access to external services without the tedious task of resubmitting Card holders’ credentials. This functionality enables ID Authority partners to expand their customer base simply by using the Emirates ID card as a single point of access. As a result, citizens and residents can interact between different government agencies and organizations without the need to authenticate multiple times as the service provider that carried out the initial verification can securely federate the credentials to another trusted service provider.
| 8. What were the most successful outputs and why was the initiative effective?
In addition to strict project management controls, the ID Authority implemented the following initiatives to monitor and evaluate progress:
BENEFITS REALISATION SURVEYS
To measure the impact of the project, the ID Authority worked with management consultants to undertake a comprehensive Service Provider survey, across a range of Industries including aviation, banking, education, e-government, telecoms, security, and transport amongst others. The aim is to build up a complete picture of the benefits the ID Cards and Gateway provide across the UAE. The end result is a financial model that collates costs and benefits analysis, extrapolates it across the UAE economy to provide input into wider economic analysis. Key findings that will be used as benchmarks for future survey results include:
* 91% of providers are looking for ways to improve the quality of information
* 83% believe that securing ID verification improves trust, quality satisfaction leading to growth in revenue
* 76% think adopting e-signatures improves internal processes
KEY PERFORMANCE INDICATORS
The Emirates ID Authority implements its strategic and operational plans, and monitors the performance of all its organizational units and operations by focusing on the measurement of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). In support of the 2010-2013 Strategic Plan, the ID Authority implemented a rigorous system of 17 KPIs of which six relate to the National Gateway. Over 90% of which meet or exceed targets:
* Allowing approved access to population register data: 99.18% system availability
* Developing safe infrastructure for data exchange: 82.2% of target
* Increasing the daily usability of ID cards: 100% of target authorities
* Integrated Internal Systems: 89% user satisfaction
* Providing internal services: 87.5% satisfaction6
* Making ID Card most valuable in UAE: 91.67% MOUs concluded
A full suite of compliance measures ensures that the services made available via the National Validation Gateway are delivered at the highest levels of compliance with the relevant international standards both for data security and customer service. The Emirates Identity Authority has successfully retained International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 9001 Certification for Quality Management System and ISO 27001 for strict adherence to the global quality management standards. Emirates ID was also certified for the International Customer Service standard (TICSS: 2010) by the British Standards Institution - achieving 82% of the benchmark.
| 9. What were the main obstacles encountered and how were they overcome?
The National Validation Gateway is designed to provide the infrastructure for joining up the whole of government within the UAE, and for partnering with the private sector. In pursuit of these objectives, the initiative encountered organisational resistance to change within government, as well as difficulty engaging businesses: (1) Government Departments are used to working in silos in which control over processes represents power. (2) Private sector stakeholders are bottom-line profit driven, and wary of investing time and money in unproven schemes.
To address these challenges, the Authority took the strategic decision to start small, and bring additional government agencies and businesses onboard by demonstrating tangible benefits to them. As such, the Authority initially partnered with the Abu Dhabi Systems and Information Centre (ADSIC) to deliver Identity Services through the National Validation Gateway, including Digital Signature Services.
ADSIC estimates that secure remote identification and verification helped to cut customer provisioning time by a remarkable 95%. In 2102, the Gateway in Abu Dhabi saw a 17 percent growth in its services across 47 government entities. The Abu Dhabi e‐Government portal now uses the Gateway to offer a wide range of public and private services including: transactions for identification documents, passports and residency documents, lands, home, travel, motoring, work and employment benefits for nationals community, religion, health and education, safety, security and law; culture, leisure, online payment of utility bills and 24‐hour pharmacies. This success story helped the ID Authority to achieve its KPI target of securing 9 authorities throughout the UAE to use the Validation Gateway, as well as to engage major private sector stakeholders in the banking and telecommunications sectors. The Authority is currently coordinating with banking organisations across the country including UAE Central Bank to replace a number of widely used banking cards with the Emirates ID card.