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As time goes on, passwords alone are not as secure as they once were. These credentials can be easily shared and do not prove the person logging in is really you. With the increasing rate of cyber-crime, the Australian Government have made the decision to use encryption technology (the login attempt verified on a separate physical, personal device – your phone known as Two-Factor Authentication “2FA”) as well as security features in your devices (fingerprints, face or password) to keep your personal information safe. From 27 March 2020 AUSKey will be replaced with myGovID and Relationship Authorisation Manager (“RAM”).

So what is myGovID and RAM?

MyGovID is your digital identity which allows an easy and secure way to access government online services. MyGovID differs to MyGov as it lets you prove who you are when using these services. Your myGovID is unique to you and your device. RAM is an authorisation service that allows you to act on behalf of a business online which is managed by the Australian Taxation Office (“ATO”).

Who does this impact?

This change impacts anyone who uses:

• Online Services for Agents or Access Manager;
• AUSKey to access government online services or the Australian Business Register (“ABR”); and
• If your employees (or others) access government online services on behalf of your practice.

What do you need to do?

To get started, the principal authority (a business owner or listed associate) will need to ensure RAM uses the correct information by checking their personal details (Address, Name, etc) are up to date on the ABR.

The principal authority will then need to set up their myGovID and link the business in RAM. Please note if your personal details are not up to date with ABR, linking your myGovID and RAM with a “Standard” identity strength may be difficult.

Steps to setting up myGovID are:

1. Download the myGovID app on your smart device;
2. Enter your details (Full Name, Date of Birth and Email Address) and follow the prompts on the myGovID app; and
3. Add your identity documents.

There are two types of myGovID identity Strengths, “Standard” and “Basic”. To access the online services, you need a myGovID with a “Standard” identity strength. In order to gain the “Standard” identity strength, you require two of the following Australian identity documents:

• Australian Drivers Licence;
• Australian Passport;
• Australia Birth Certificate;
• Australian Medicare Card.

However, you may be unable to achieve the “Standard” identity strength if you are:

• An offshore employee or principal authority;
• A non-resident working in Australia;
• An Australian without the right identity documents.

What happens if you are unable to gain “Standard” identity strength?

If you are unable to gain the “Standard” identity strength, you will be able to gain a “Basic” identity strength. Note, for security purposes there are some restrictions that apply to the “Basic” identity strength and you will not be able to access certain government online services. The Australian Government have advised that they are currently working on a way to allow “Basic” users to gain “Standard” access however, no specific timeframe has been advised.

Once the principal authority has linked their myGovID with RAM, they can set up authorisations for employees (and others) to act on behalf of the business and access selected government online services using their myGovID.

For an employee or others to start using the government online services on behalf of a business, they will need to setup their own myGovID first. Once this has been setup, they can accept the authorisation code sent from the principal authority via email and log into RAM to accept or decline the request.

What happens if I have two of the four Australian documents and still can’t get “Standard” identity strength?

This may suggest that your personal information differs to what the Australian Government Departments have. For example, your full name differs on your Australian documentation, you have changed address and have not notified the relevant government departments etc. It is important to update all your personal information with the government department to keep your personal identity safe and secure.

Safety of your personal information is the main priority!

Remember, your personal information forms part of your identity. Although this myGovID transition is a step the Australian Government are taking to protect your personal information, you still need to stay safe online. Keep your personal information and passwords secure by treating requests for personal information with caution as well as staying cautious when clicking on hyperlinks embedded in SMS and emails. (do not click on links or attachments from unknown sources).

We encourage everyone to act now with their transition into myGovID.

If you require clarification in respect of the above, please contact your WMS advisor.

DISCLAIMER: This article is intended to provide a general summary only and should not be relied on as a substitute for professional advice.

© 2020 WMS Solutions Pty Ltd