National Digital Identity Platform (NDIP) -as it is called- is the project that had Sierra Leone and the United Nations (UN) to partner up. Mildly put, the country wants its identification system to be backed by a blockchain network. Checking IDs on the go is as it is described, is going to be a fast way for identification.
The United Nations and Kiva – a non-profit organization, based in San Francisco are up to the task. Kiva has been a close ally to Sierra Leone in the digital sector. The duo has been at this project since September 2018.
President of Sierra Leone, Julius Maada Bio shed light on the new infrastructure, explaining that it will be used by financial institutions for identity verification and building credit histories according to a report by NFCW news on 2 September 2019.
It’s a two-step method. The first phase would be to digitize all existing identities. The second phase begins with creating unique identification – something like MAC numbers on the back of electronics. The second phase consists of creating National Identification Numbers that are non-reusable, non-duplicating, and universally recognized.
When will the National Digital Identity Platform made public?
Consequently, the first step has been completed, and the country is expected to have the system running by the end of 2019.
Sierra Leone’s President claims that the residents will be better off with the improvements being made. Currently, about eight-five (85%) population does not have internet access, and yet more than seventy-five percent (75%) have no banking accounts.
The president believes that taking such measures will drive the masses towards the means of acquiring these facilities by making them more financially resilient. Opening an account or loaning assets from the bank will not be that difficult and frowned upon one the people start understanding.
User confidentiality cannot be compromised in this matter, and Julius Maada Bio stressed this fact by citing the National Civil Registration Authority as the keepers of such confidential information. He also noted the platform’s ability to write new records for data modification as one of the major benefits of implementing blockchain tech.