A software consultancy headed up by the former executive director of the UK government’s digital service has won the contract to help deliver a digital identity platform for citizens in Scotland.

Scott Logic will partner with the Scottish Government on the ‘implementation and development’ of a secure service that verifies identity for those claiming benefits or accessing government services.

It’s the second major recent project for the firm, following a two-year programme that started in 2020 working on a new payment platform that will allow Scottish public sector departments to manage payments consistently. The digital identity work began in April 2021 and will run for two years, with an option to extend for a further two years.

Business Minister Ivan McKee said: “People expect public services that are accessible and simple to use. They want them to be inclusive and designed around their needs, rather than the structures of the organisations that provide them.

“Our vision is to introduce a digital identity service for users, that provides a safe and easy way for people to prove that they are eligible for a public service or benefit online.” 

The digital identity programme is part of the Scottish Government’s Digital Strategy actions to build a suite of common platforms to be adopted across the public sector, transforming government.

Users will be able to store their information and choose to share it when applying to public services. This will improve a user’s access to services by providing a safe, secure and accessible way to prove their identity, while reducing time and cost for the public sector. 

The programme encompasses four main components: secure sign-in for end users, an attribute store, integration with credential providers and integration with service customers, the public sector organisations that depend on verification. Scott Logic is the principal implementation and development partner, bringing its engineering expertise, as well as configuring, testing, API development and full service management.

“This is a user-driven platform that will improve access to public services in Scotland by providing citizens with a safe and secure way to prove their identity. It will also reduce time and cost for the public sector when delivering digital services,” said Stuart Grey, head of consultancy, Edinburgh office, Scott Logic.

“It’s an essential component of Scottish Government’s platform strategy, giving users complete control over how their personal information is used, stored and shared to prove eligibility for a public service or benefit online. We have a strong heritage working with the public sector and to be entrusted with such an important strategic project is testament to our credentials and expertise in this field.” 

Scott Logic employs more than 300 people, providing a wide range of technology services, including architecture and technical strategy, bespoke software development, and data engineering. In January 2021 it announced the appointment of former executive director of Government Digital Services (GDS), Stephen Foreshew-Cain, as the new company CEO.

The digital identity programme is the second major piece of work for Scott Logic with the Scottish Government. After partnering during the prototype and alpha phases, Scott Logic began work in October 2020 on a new payment platform that will allow Scottish public sector departments to manage payments consistently. 

With tens of millions of transactions set to take place in coming years, this two-year project aims to drive consistency of user experience and standardise the outbound payment process across Scottish Government. Scott Logic is the implementation and development partner, building the platform, application and integration services.