THE government is steering work on a National Digital Identity (Digital ID) project to increase the range of digital transactions and reduce fraud in onlinepayment channels.
Some eight groups have been identified as stakeholders and will begin participating in the project in June.
The Electronic Transactions Development Agency (ETDA) expects that it will have around 10,000 Digital ID registrations under the first phrase of the project.
ETDA executive director Surangkana Wayuparb said the agency has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Omise to develop the Digital ID platform as a means of enabling Thais to more securely identify themselves when making online transactions. The project will make use of a number of means such as facial recognition, a one-time password and fingerprint recognition.
The National Digital ID Platform will have open and intermediary infrastructure that provides online service providers with standard ways to identify and authenticate their subscribers or customers using existing digital identifications, ETDA said.
It will allow them to access a variety of services remotely. Examples of digital identifications include user accounts on the government services, such as the Revenue Department (RD) and The Department of Business Development (DBD), Internet banking accounts and e-wallet accounts, the agency said.
It says the new platform will be more convenient for government agencies, state enterprises and other state sector outlets that provide the option of online transactions.
"We have collaborated with the private sector to develop the Digital ID Platform for Thailand as the National Digital ID provider,” Surangkana said.
“We have established a cooperative partnership with Omise to initiate the ID project. There are eight parties that have joined the first phase of this project: the Revenue Department, the Student Loan Fund, the Thailand Securities Depository, Thai Bankers' Association, Association of Thai Securities Companies, The Thai Life Assurance Association, the Thai General Insurance Association, and the National Credit Bureau.”
Surangkana said that the agency will pilot the project with the eight parties - with the participation of around 100 businesses and organisations in June - and expects that it will spend around Bt10 million to enable the registration of some 10,000 digital IDs nationwide.
The project would be completed by the end of this year, with the registration of around 100,000 users and total investment of about Bt100 million, the agency said
“The ETDA is ready to collaborate with experienced companies in the private sector to facilitate the development of trusted digital identities and the digital ID ecosystem in Thailand,” Surangkana said.
“I think that the National Digital ID will become part of efforts to reduce fraud in online payment transactions. The agency set up the Online Complaint Centre (OCC) last year. There are around 20,000 cases arising from calls to OCC, and cover issues related to fraud, e-commerce, online shopping and payment transactions. There are around 10,000 cases that relate to allegations of fraudulent transactions and other forms of fraudulent payments.”
Ezradon Harinsut, a co-founder of Omise, which provides online payment infrastructure and a payment platform, said that under the cooperation, the company would develop the platform for the project. The firm will also be engaged in future developments to support its corporate customers, such as Line, True, DTAC and Minor Group.
“I think that the National Digital ID project will make it easy for users to be identified for online transaction and will able to boost the volume of online payments and the e-commerce sector in the country,” Harinsut said. “Moreover, it will create a user experience and encourage users who do not have bank accounts to make online transactions and online payments.”
Surangkana said that the e-commerce market in Thailand was valued at Bt2.5 trillion last year.
She expects that this market would reach Bt2.8 trillion by the end of the year.
Thais spend around 9.8 hours a day on the Internet.