Digital Governance Standards Institute Publishes Technical Specification for Digital Credentials and Digital Trust Services

The Digital Governance Standards Institute (DGSI) is pleased to announce the publication of Technical Specification 115 (DGSI/TS 115) for Digital Credentials and Digital Trust Services, developed under the Standards Council of Canada’s guidance for National Technical Specifications.

This Technical Specification specifies a methodology for testing and criteria to be achieved to claim a system’s compliance in issuing, managing, storing, presenting, or verifying machine-readable digital credentials.

DGSI/TS 115 also aims to set the baseline requirements for interoperability and trust amongst digital credentials issuers, verifiers, and holders, while developing a set of core principles and a set of best practices.

The Standards Council of Canada will use this Technical Specification as part of its four-phase project with the Government of Canada. The Standards Council of Canada will begin testing that the Technical Specification is well-suited for its purpose as it pilots a prototype conformity assessment program for digital credentials and digital trust services. Accreditation and conformity assessment play a vital role by ensuring that standards, and other standardization tools like technical specifications, are applied correctly and consistently which in turn creates trust in systems, products and services.

“The Standards Council of Canada and the Government of Canada is dedicated to establishing trustworthy digital credentials for Canadians. This Technical Specification is an important step to create an accreditation program for digital credentials and digital trust services. By ensuring that conformity assessment bodies and standards development organizations demonstrate technical competence, reliability and integrity in line with national and international standards, accreditation helps create trust in systems, products and services.”

Elias Rafoul, SCC’s Vice-President, Accreditation Services Branch

Digital credentials are becoming increasingly relevant in today’s digital economy as they are electronic representations of the physical certificates and IDs that enable the economy to function. Digital wallets are under the user’s control, and they can store digital versions of documents like plane tickets, driver’s licenses, university degrees, and business incorporation certificates. These applications are powered by blockchain-based data registries, issuing, and verifying systems, which collectively form digital trust services.

This Technical Specification is essential as it provides organizations with a framework to evaluate their current security posture and identify areas that may need improvement. It helps ensure infrastructure systems and data are adequately secured and that risks to those systems are minimized.

DGSI/TS 115 is now available for download and can be found on the Digital Governance Council website.

“The Digital Governance Standards Institute was proud to partner with the Standards Council of Canada (SCC) and the Government of Canada, to support the development of this technical specification. It sets out minimum certification requirements to ensure that digital credentials and trust services are interoperable between businesses and governments and create a seamless experience for users.”

Darryl Kingston, Executive Director, Digital Governance Standards Institute


Media Requests

Julia Hancock
Digital Governance Standards Institute

Emilie Sartoretto
Standards Council of Canada



Digital Governance Council
The Digital Governance Council works to provide Canadians with confidence in the responsible design, architecture and management of digital technologies through four streams of activity:

    • Convening an executive forum for members to share best practices, identify digital governance gaps and prioritize collective action.
    • Partnering to prove out new technologies and deliver proofs of concept and common building blocks to manage risks and opportunities associated with the use of digital technologies.
    • Establishing the Council’s Digital Governance Standards Institute, independent of the Council, to develop technology governance standards.
    • Certifying organizations against digital governance standards.


Digital Governance Standards Institute
The Digital Governance Standards Institute develops digital technology governance standards fit for global use. The Institute works with experts, as well as national and global partners and the public to develop national standards that reduce risk to Canadians and Canadian organizations adopting and using innovative digital technologies in today’s digital economy. The Institute is an independent division of the Digital Governance Council.


Standards Council of Canada
Since 1970, the Standards Council of Canada has helped make life safer, healthier, more prosperous and sustainable for people, communities and businesses in Canada through the power of standardization. SCC works with a vast network of partners nationally and around the world, acting as Canada’s voice on standards and accreditation on the international stage, including as a member of the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). As the country’s leading accreditation organization, SCC creates market confidence at home and abroad by ensuring conformity assessment bodies meet the highest expectations. In all these ways, SCC opens a world of possibilities.

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