Through Identity and Data the mobile industry unlocks digital transformation



The mobile industry can help unlock digital transformation for its customers. Mobile operator identity and data services enable users to access online services securely and easily whilst protecting their privacy.

Until 2020, the GSMA Identity team supported the development of mobile operator identity services, this included the development of Mobile Connect. To date over 70 mobile operators have deployed Mobile Connect and mobile operators together offer joint identity services to varied verticals including financial services, e-commerce, social media and other online companies in many major global markets e.g. US, Russia, China, UK, France, Germany.

As our initiatives evolve, we continue to support the mobile industry to build on earlier successes through a number of activities. We help our members learn from each other’s successes and collaborate so that the identity ecosystem continues to grow with the mobile industry at its heart.

Download our latest Mobile Identity: Enabling The Digital World report as we examine elements crucial for identity trust and scale including; interoperability, federation, partnerships, collaboration, and compelling business value security-by-design, transparent trust endorsements, and user privacy and control.

Mobile Industry contribution to Identity

As ever more of our daily interactions move online, digital identity services play an increasingly central role in our lives. Establishing trust in the digital space however remains a crucial challenge: the total cost of cybercrime is forecast to rise to $6 trillion globally by 2021, up from $3 trillion in 2015.

The solutions we use to navigate digital services, platforms and payments must be reliable and secure, but they must also be convenient. The mobile industry has a leading role to play here, and the commercial opportunities for operators are considerable. Whether as enablers of third party identity solutions, or providers of their own, operators possess a unique array of tools and capabilities which allow them to ensure the trust which is vital to the continued growth of the digital economy.

With their differentiated assets such as the SIM card, strong registration process, authentication, fraud detection and mitigation processes, mobile operators have the ability to provide sufficient authentication to enable consumers, businesses and governments to interact in a private, trusted and secure environment and enable access to services.

As a highly regulated industry with a vast network of global partner organisations, operators are uniquely well placed to help build a world in which digital interactions are safer, yet simpler, while privacy is protected as a matter of policy.

Watch our partner interviews here.

Identity and Data Community

The purpose of our global community is to offer professionals from the mobile industry a platform to share knowledge and best practices on Identity and Data services. The objective is to highlight commercial opportunities for Identity and Data services, with a focus on the development of commercial solutions for third parties. The community is open to all full, rapporteur and associate members of the GSMA who have an interest in Identity and Data.

We run regular online webinars and offer an online collaboration space and we also run the European Identity Group.

Contact us at [email protected] if you wish to get involved.

Identity and Data Group

The Identity and Data Group is a sub-working group of the GSMA Internet Group which is open to all GSMA members.

Our activities include:

  • Requirements gathering & experience sharing
  • Definition of the functional requirements for new identity products/services
  • Specification of new identity products/services
  • Liaison with Standards Development Organisations on protocol/profile enhancements to support these new products/services
  • Maintenance of existing Mobile Connect specifications (collaboration with SDOs on protocols/profiles)
  • Generation of informative guidelines (e.g., implementation, operations etc.)

Learn more about how to get involved here.

Mobile Connect

Mobile Connect is a secure universal identity service offering a simple, trusted way for mobile users to share sensitive data, and undertake transactions with confidence. Enabling authentication, authorisation and secure identity verification, swiftly, globally, and cost-effectively.

  • Simple By matching the end user to their mobile phone number, Mobile Connect empowers the user to confirm his/her identity online, and authorise transactions such as payments, sharing only the personal data that’s essential for completing the transaction.
  • Secure The Mobile Connect product portfolio is delivered through the Mobile Connect API using the OpenID Connect standard. The service provider’s application invokes the API to request the desired functionality from an operator; examples are authenticating an end-user or securely verifying the phone number of the user through the mobile network. The operator engages with the end-user to fulfil the request and provide a response back to the application.
  • Seamless The Mobile Connect API’s unique federated architecture works seamlessly with multiple operators across the globe.

Those operators wishing to implement Mobile Connect can refer to the document “Mobile Connect Deployment Guide​” to understand the solution proposition and guide them through the documents and presentations that can help with the Mobile Connect deployment. Mobile Connect has been launched by more than 70 operators around the world.

Find out more about the projects we are working on with participating mobile network operators or email us at [email protected] to learn more about our community.