Digital wallet for government services on the cards

An one-stop app to store Australiansā€™ government information and identifications is being flagged to help improve services.

The governmentā€™s myGov app, which spans services like Centrelink, Medicare and the tax office, is set for a revamp.

Government Services Minister Bill Shorten said he envisaged a simple, go-to digital wallet where Australians only needed one password to access their information.

ā€œPeople donā€™t have to remember all their passwords and have to deal with multiple government accounts,ā€ he said.

Mr Shorten says driverā€™s licences and other services could be added to the app to have 100 points of ID available and easily accessible on your phone.

ā€œMy hope is, the vision is, that youā€™ve got sufficient ID in your government wallet that you can show a private sector business ā€¦ and you donā€™t actually have to transfer your data,ā€ he said.

Medicare cards are expected to be available digitally in March.

The appā€™s usability, response time, and access to information will all be improved.

David Thodey, who chaired the audit into myGov, says thereā€™s no evidence having data on an app instead of through other portals increases the risk of fraud.

ā€œThe multi-factor authentication that we have within the myGov ID, and you use both the phone and you use other authentication, means that we think the incidence of fraud can be brought down,ā€ he said.

Mr Thodey says continued investment in cybersecurity is also needed, with 60 per cent of Australians accessing myGov through their phones.

ā€œGoing digital is a critical part of delivering better services but it does create risk around identity management, identity theft (and) privacy,ā€ he said.

ā€œI feel pretty positive. Thatā€™s not to say we donā€™t have risk and things could happen, but itā€™s how you manage risk and how you respond to it.ā€

The audit recommends legislating myGov as a national service delivery infrastructure to create greater oversight and accountability as well as implementing a five year rolling plan updated annually.

The government will consider the auditā€™s recommendations.


Dominic Giannini
(Australian Associated Press)


Like This