Digital ID App for Driver’s Licenses No Longer Needs Passport to Register

Bluink hero

Ottawa-based Bluink announced on Tuesday its digital ID app, eID-Me for iOS and Android, no longer requires a passport for Canadians to register for the service.

All you need to sign up now is a driver’s license or photo ID card.

“eID-Me is a fully decentralized Sovereign Identity that encrypts ID information offline in a digital wallet on your mobile phone. Users can share this ID information with various organizations that are adopting eID-Me for customer onboarding and eKYC (know your customer) identity verification,” explains Bluink.

The eID-Me app launched in March 2020 and at the time required both a passport and ID card to register, to verify a user’s identity, as part of the federal government’s standards for identity assurance.

Bluink says one of its most requested features was to remove the passport requirement to register.

The new feature now available is called Flexible IAL, which offer the eID-Me app various levels of identity assurance (IAL1 or IAL2), depending on which documents are scanned by a user.

When you scan an ID card, you can an IAL1 digital ID, but if you scan both an ID card and passport, you can an IAL2 digital ID, allowing users to share their ID with various organizations.

The company says your ID information is “encrypted and stored offline on your smartphone. It’s not stored in the cloud. Our company, Bluink, cannot access your ID information.”

“Our goal is to improve access to digital, online and offline services for all Canadians,” said Steve Borza, CEO of Bluink, in a statement to iPhone in Canada. “That’s why we removed the passport requirement and that’s why we created eID-Me in the first place. We have listened to our users and we’re happy to implement this new capability and remove friction from the eID-Me onboarding process.”

A Bluink spokesperson said in an email the following places are accepting eID-Me as a form of identity verification, which so far is limited:

  • Orleans Health Hub in Ottawa
  • Diamond and Diamond Lawyers
  • Emerson 109 Bar in Hamilton, Ontario

In the meantime, we’re told Bluink is also developing integrations with a “large Canada-wide organization” and also an unnamed Canadian city.