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Easier online access to govt agencies

Hon Dr Michael Cullen
Minister of Finance
Hon David Parker
Minister of State Services

23 July 2008 Media Statement

Easier online access to govt agencies

New Zealanders will gain personalised online access to a wider range of government services, following a new whole-of-government direction, Finance Minister Michael Cullen and State Services Minister David Parker said today.

From now on, Crown agents will be required to sign up to the Government Logon Service and Identification Verification Service (“igovt”) when they introduce new on-line services. Up until now, only Public Service Departments have been required to participate in the igovt services.

“By requiring that Crown agents and Public Service Departments use the same authentication system, we expect savings for taxpayers of up to $400 million over 10 years. This includes a direct saving to New Zealanders of $27 million over 10 years in the costs associated with verifying their identity the traditional way, such as obtaining and certifying personal documents,” Dr Cullen said.

“Not only will the directive reduce duplication of resources and investment, it will provide New Zealanders with better services as government agencies will be able to join up their services with each other. It will also improve usability as the public have access to more government services online, but only need to know how to use one authentication service,” David Parker said.

The Government Logon Service provided by the State Services Commission is already being used by a number of participating agencies for people to check payment of council rates and to download statistics. More agencies are signing up all the time.

This is the first time Cabinet has used a whole-of-government direction under section 107 of the Crown Entities Act 2004. The Act provides Ministers with the ability to direct Crown entities to comply with specific requirements that support a whole-of-government approach and improve public services.

The government consulted with Crown agents before making this decision, and has received their support. A whole-of-government directive remains before the House for 15 sitting days before coming into effect.

ENDS

For information about the Authentication programme, go to: www.i.govt.nz
For a list of Public Service Departments and Crown Entities, go to: www.ssc.govt.nz/state_sector_organisations

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