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When the history of the COVID-19 crisis is written, it will emphasize the amount of waste, fraud, and abuse that took place. Hundreds of billions of dollars in COVID-19 relief have been released.
These programs include the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loans. The opportunities for cheating are so apparent that the GAO has established a FraudNet Hotline.
Today’s scammers access funding through electronic means. The first step in this process is a valid way to establish identity.
Blake Hall saw this as a major problem long before COVID-19. Back in 2010, he co-founded ID.me to assist veterans to streamline the identification process. This developed into a federated way to establish identity in distributed environments, like the cloud. His system proved to be easy to use and saved money for commercial organizations.
When remote work took over the federal government in 2020, his system for identification attracted several federal agencies because it reduced friction and cut costs for identification.
Hall brings a unique perspective on identity management to the federal information technology community. During the interview he detailed some of the federal challenges in identification, including legacy systems, issues with proprietary directories, and how any identification system can scale effectively.