The legislative push to develop digital identity systems took another step forward today when the  Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee voted today to advance the Improving Digital Identity Act.


The legislation now advances to the Senate floor for full consideration.


The bill would establish the Improving Digital Identity Task Force – a public-private taskforce – to establish a government-wide effort to develop secure methods for governmental agencies to protect the privacy and security of individuals and support reliable, interoperable digital identity verification in the public and private sectors.


The legislation also would direct the Department of Homeland Security to award grants to state, local, tribal, and territorial governments to upgrade systems that provide drivers’ licenses or other types of identity credentials to support the development of highly secure, interoperable systems that enable digital identity verification.


The Government Accountability Office also would be tasked with reporting to Congress on estimated cost savings from widespread use of digital identification technologies.


Sens. Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., and Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyo., introduced the legislation in July 2021. Reps. Bill Foster, D-Ill., John Katko, R-N.Y., Jim Langevin, D-R.I., and Barry Loudermilk, R-Ga., introduced a companion bill in the House in July 2021. That measure was approved by the House Oversight and Reform Committee in July.


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