How the Biden Administration Can Make Digital Identity a Reality

How the Biden Administration Can Make Digital Identity a Reality
A digital identity framework is the answer to the US government's cybersecurity dilemma.

While data breaches and ransomware attacks kept the cybersecurity industry preoccupied last year, the scope of the SolarWinds data breach far surpassed common exploits, garnering mainstream and social media attention. The breach impacted several of the country's largest technology companies, including Cisco, Microsoft, and NVIDIA, as well as the US Departments of Commerce, Homeland Security, and Treasury. This incident prompted President Joe Biden to quickly sign the American Rescue Plan Act into law, prioritizing cybersecurity and allocating $2 billion to modernize the country's digital infrastructure.


The Biden administration has promised to broadly improve digital security, monitoring, and response times, establishing a modern "digital identity" system of particular importance. A digital identity system compiles specific information, such as proof of age, passport number, and basic health and financial data, into one "card" that resides on your phone, backed with biometric security.


By using recent European regulations as a foundation to secure individuals' data and link it to their digital identity, the federal government could close the security gaps that have historically led to fraud. Digital identity authentication would be faster, more accurate, and more useful than manually checking physical ID cards, accelerating public and private sector transactions.


A Holistic Approach to Digital IdentityDigital identity has already gained bipartisan support on Capitol Hill. In 2020, Representatives Bill Foster (D-IL) and John Katho (R-NY) introduced the Improving Digital Identity Act, designed to establish a nationwide approach to improving digital identity. Now, the Biden administration plans to leverage digital identity for modernization of public services, ranging from government ..