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Majority of businesses switch to myGovID as deadline nears

At the end of this week, the Australian government’s login credentials, AUSkey and Manage ABN Connections, will be retired. But according to the ATO, over 75 per cent of businesses have already made the necessary move.

Majority of businesses switch to myGovID as deadline nears
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  • Maja Garaca Djurdjevic
  • March 24, 2020
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On 27 March, the Australian Taxation Office and 26 other government agencies will retire the decade-old login credentials replacing them with myGovID and an authorisation service called Relationship Authorisation Manager (RAM).

According to the ATO, over 75 per cent of businesses using AUSkey have already made the necessary move to myGovID, with the adoption rates trending well above ATO forecasts.

This, the Tax Office said, is great news, because the underlying AUSkey infrastructure was hard-coded to expire at the end of March when it was first built 10 years ago, and cannot be extended.

MyGovID and RAM prove the identity of an individual prior to granting them access to the ATO’s Business Portal and Online services for agents, as well as a range of other government online services.  

“The overwhelming majority of businesses are setting up myGovID and RAM in less than 15 minutes. Over 80 per cent of applicants are just downloading the myGovID app to their smart device and following the prompts. They don’t even need to look at any other instructions,” ATO chief digital officer John Dardo said.

“For those that need extra support, our web material, videos and Contact Centre hotlines are there to help.”

Additionally, organisations, tax professional practices and businesses with multiple AUSkey users can take advantage of the import AUSkey user function to transfer current permissions and create multiple authorisations in RAM. This is available until AUSkey retires on 27 March.

“It is important that tax professional practices or businesses with a large number of AUSkey users should be using this as an opportunity to ensure that their users and their authorities have been reviewed and configured in a way that aligns with their organisational roles," Mr Dardo said. 

"Some organisations have discovered that they had hundreds or thousands of active AUSkeys assigned to people that had left their organisation years ago. For those organisations, this is an opportunity to review and implement a more robust management of authorisations for their employees.

“We are committed to ensuring that access to our services is as easy and flexible as possible, but we must also collectively increase the security of our online systems as we make more services available online. After all, the community expects us to be proactive in the protection of their data and their online accounts."

Later transition possible 

He encouraged practitioners to refrain from panicking, explaining that while the ATO is encouraging businesses to move to myGovID as early as possible, the ATO will still be there to help them if they need to transition after 27 March.

However, the Tax Office warned it will not be able to access a range of online services for these businesses after 27 March, until they implement myGovID and RAM.

“We understand that this is a difficult time for many. If you are experiencing difficulties with tax obligations because of bushfires or COVID-19 and not using our online services now, we will support you making the move to myGovID when you’re ready,” Mr Dardo said.

“So far over 500,000 businesses and organisations have moved to myGovID with over 750,000 accepted authorisations of individuals and staff, and we continue to offer assistance to those who have yet to make the move.”

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