Issuance of identity is a complex exercise. In digital identity systems based on platforms like MOSIP, biometrics, where needed, provides an essential integrity measure for establishing uniqueness. As MOSIP adoptions accelerate across the world, a growing community of partners and vendors are geared up to make MOSIP-compliant biometric devices and solutions available worldwide.
It is important to recognise that the quality of biometric images acquired helps determine the overall efficiency of a system, and has a direct impact on a system’s ability to perform deduplication and authentication functions. In order to provide an independent “certification” or “assurance” mechanism for the biometric devices that MOSIP users are deploying, MOSIP has initiated the drafting of a modular, globally adoptable, certification framework.
The objective of this effort, is to:
To this end, MOSIP has entered into a partnership with Australia-based NIST/NVLAP and FIDO-accredited biometric testing lab, BixeLab for assistance in the creation of a certification framework.
The vision is to arrive at a framework for the assessment of full compliance at the levels of image quality, software interfaces, and hardware-based security implementation levels, in a way that offers meaningful and realistic results. Adopting countries should be able to rely on these results while making decisions on biometric devices in their ecosystems.
An independent mechanism for biometric certification will offer users the flexibility to either set up certification programmes internally, or rely on empanelled, independent laboratories to ascertain the quality of devices. This reduces the risks and effort associated with establishing full-fledged programmes, which may be resource-intensive and time-consuming. This certification framework is expected to be especially useful to smaller countries, who may have limited bandwidth to build in-house certification schemes.
The decided upon standard assessment criteria has to be independently adoptable by global laboratories; those that can support both global and geography-specific needs for compliance; that MOSIP-adopting countries can rely on. These labs will offer an MACP (MOSIP Advanced Compliance Programme) certification, a programme that will be structured with country needs in mind and developed in consultation with the ecosystem.
The framework will be developed in a staged manner, and the output of the work will be published regularly to the ecosystem for their feedback. The qualification criteria for the labs also will be detailed out as a part of the framework. While the work is in the initial stages, the early drafts are expected to be available by Q3 2022.