Kantara Initiative

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About Us​

The UK’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has created a certification scheme under which Identity Service Providers (IDSPs) can be certified to ensure that their organisation and service meet the requirements of its Digital Identity Trust & Attributes Framework (DIATF). 

In March 2022, Kantara Initiative Ltd. was announced as one of 5 organisations authorised to certify IDSPs under the UKAS and DCMS program. Since 2009, we have led the way in assuring that digital identity solutions meet the required standards. 

We believe the UK DIATF will help increase certainty, choice, quality and innovation in the identity ecosystem. It will ultimately improve customer experience, safeguard individuals and reduce the cost of providing efficient and high quality services.

The initial use cases for the DIATF are identity verification for the Disclosure & Barring Service, Right to Work and Right to Rent schemes.

Our History

2009 – Kantara Initiative pioneers the first digital identity assurance framework, developing a certification program for Identity Service Providers

2010 – The US General Services Administration, Office of Government wide Policy and identity, Credential and Access Management (ICAM) recognises Kantara as a Trust Framework Provider to certify identity providers NIST Special Publication 800-63. 

2019 – Release of OMB-19-17 with an explicit mandate to US federal agencies to implement NIST 800-63-3, using IDSPs that have been certified under the Kantara Initiative Assurance Program. 

2020 – The US  Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) requires NIST 800-63 compliant credentials for healthcare providers. The CARIN Alliance and Kantara signed a collaborative agreement, including the implementation of Digital Identity and Federation in Healthcare, requiring the use of NIST 800-63-3 certified service providers. 

2022 – CARIN Alliance, CommonWell Health Alliance and TEFCA recommend adoption and certification against NIST 800-63-3 to protect patient personal identity information (PII) via the Kantara Assurance program. 

2022 – Kantara Initiative Ltd. begins certifying IDSPs against the UK’s DIATF for Right to Work, Right to Rent and DBS schemes.

Our Team

In the UK, we are supported by a team that includes experts in programme management, in digital identity and in certification across multiple jurisdictions.

Our Management Team has established a due diligence process that will guide you through assurance as efficiently as possible.

Our Auditors are dedicated specialists in cybersecurity, privacy and digital identity. They are highly qualified in information security and trust framework audits and certification across multiple sectors and jurisdictions.  They have more than 25 years’ experience in the audit domain. Specifically in the field of identity assurance, they offer all the required skills, credentials and competencies to verify compliance against identity, credential and attribute standards and profiles, security policies, standards, legal and regulatory requirements. 

Providing impartial oversight is an independent Trust Certification Board which conducts a final quality review of all audit findings.

Our Advisory Board provides independent thinking and guidance to Kantara’s UK team.  Emma Lindley MBE, Alison McDowell and Andrew Hindle bring thought leadership and unrivalled experience in the sector. Their appointment was a deliberate move to ensure we continue to be challenged and stay abreast of the issues that IDSPs and their clients face.

Selected by DCMS to provide certification under the UK’s Digital Identity  Trust Framework

Why choose Kantara Initiative

  • We are the leaders in digital identity assurance offering a unique and versatile approach to trust framework certification that stretches back to 2009.
  • Kantara’s certification process against the DIATF is modelled on the DCMS scheme, (drawing from, among other sources ISO/IEC 17065; ISO/IEC 17021; ISO/IEC 17030).
  • We are committed to working with DCMS and UKAS to ensure that identity solutions available to the UK market are reliable, secure and inclusive and that all digital identity checks will be performed consistently regardless of sector or use case.  
  • The Kantara Initiative Trustmark is valid immediately upon completion of the required certification process. 
  • We offer identity assurance across multiple jurisdictions, including the US and UK. Organisations that need to be certified in multiple markets benefit from our consistent approach to assurance.     
  • Kantara’s tailored, modular approach to certification supports the uniqueness of each service and organisation. This is fundamental to building an interoperable ecosystem in the UK. 

Here’s what other vendors have said about working with Kantara Initiative to become certified as an IDSP.

Having a Kantara-approved solution provides us with a recognized industry-standard certification that helps differentiate us from other solutions in the marketplace.

Kantara is an international center of excellence for the equitable use of personal data and identity

#1 for accrediting organizations to agreed standards for identity to improve user experience and privacy

    If your organisation would be interested to demonstrate that it is ready to carry out checks for Right to Work, Right to Rent and the DBS through our certification process, please contact our team

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