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Your Personal Identity is Dynamic – Here’s Why New Gender Marker Policies Must Keep Up

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Coded bias remains a major concern in the field of artificial intelligence and identity verification.  Fortunately, some technology companies are helping to create a more inclusive and secure world by ensuring digital identity verification algorithms and gender markers are not in conflict.

The days of fixed identities are over.

Today, we view our identities as dynamic, reflecting not just who we are but who and what we choose to be associated with. This also means we’ve outgrown simple binaries such as “male or female.”

What does this mean in practice? For governments, it’s often as simple as providing inclusive identity documents that offer something beyond “male” or “female” gender options.

For corporations, the challenge is more substantial. If a person doesn’t identify as male or female, how do you onboard this person in a safe and inclusive manner, without creating downstream problems related to verification?

At AU10TIX, we are making it our mission to help create a more inclusive and secure world. Part of that mission includes reconciling technology with society’s evolving recognition of gender. We’ve taken firm steps to ensure that gender bias has no place within automated identity verification.

Let’s take a closer look at the scope of this challenge, and how AU10TIX is working to ensure that identity verification works for everyone.

What Happens When Identity Verification and Personal Identity Conflict?

The identity verification process has become inescapable in the digital world. Companies need to efficiently and securely verify or re-verify consumer and business identities and information while adhering to compliance mandates. As a result, automated AI systems have been created to help manage this process.

Yet introducing gender in identity verification as a variable creates problems for people. What if you’re non-binary? What if your gender identity has evolved over time?

This is no small problem: According to the Williams Institute, roughly 0.3% of the global population identifies as transgender or non-binary (the term non-binary is typically used to describe those who do not identify exclusively as male or female; many non-binary people choose to use “they/them” pronouns to reflect this), including some 1.2 million people only in the United States.

The Emergence of “Gender X”

Governments and corporations are now working to provide identity documents and processes that offer broader options beyond the male/female binary. In many cases, simply providing the option to choose “X,” rather than M or F, can help non-binary people feel recognized and secure.

More than one dozen U.S. states now allow citizens to choose X as a third gender option on their driver licenses. The U.S. State Department, meanwhile, issued its first passport with the X marker in for gender in October 2021 and expects to roll out the option more broadly to the public in 2022.

Governments are not alone in their efforts. Even legacy industries such as banking have taken steps to be more inclusive, with many of the larger global banks now offering to update accounts to include a third gender option, also typically represented as X.

To help these entities become more gender inclusive, automated identity verification companies must provide them with the appropriate supporting technology to accommodate these third gender options, without causing downstream problems.

AU10TIX is at the vanguard of that movement.

How AU10TIX Keeps Personal and Digital Identity Aligned

AU10TIX is an advanced identity verification company whose technology verifies and links physical and digital identities. This technology can validate identity in less than 8 seconds, allowing businesses to rapidly onboard customers without worrying about fraud or compliance issues.

IDV, the signature offering from AU10TIX, can capture, classify and verify physical identity documents while supporting a wide variety of document types, document attributes, images, and data points – everything that businesses need to verify consumers.

IDV performs more than 100 forgery and authenticity checks and delivers comprehensive, transparent results in eight seconds or less with zero human intervention.

How IDV Eliminates Gender as a Variable

AU10TIX uses AI/ML as part of its identity verification process, but crucially does not mandatorily include gender as a variable. Recognizing that identities are not static or binary in our modern world, AU10TIX’s automated identity solution delivers critical identity services without compromising the quality of life, safety, or preferences of people who interact with that technology.

Our IDV product can extract data from identification documents, and correctly process authentication, without the need for a binary gender component, which means that “gender X” does not influence business outcomes.

In Conclusion

An automated identity verification platform does not need to consider gender – it’s that simple.

By not taking gender into consideration, AU10TIX can minimize coded bias and allow people to choose their preferred gender marker without complications when doing something as simple as signing up for a new application.

This approach is part of the AU10TIX mission is to enable an inclusive and secure world. By not considering gender as a variable with no degradation of the underlying technology, AU10TIX helps ensure that your gender will be recognized, respected and never used against you.

We strongly believe this is a critical step toward building a genuinely inclusive global environment, where everyone has the freedom to live authentically – a world where identity verification recognizes that our identity is dynamic and no longer defined by a piece of paper given to us at birth.

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