Signing in with credentials to access your account
Typically a credential is your user name/password combination that you would use to sign in to access services.
Signing in to services
By offering a choice of credentials, the Government of Canada is making its online services more convenient for clients to access. Many individuals regularly use their online credentials for banking or paying bills, so being able to use the same credential to access federal government services online will also mean one less User ID and password for clients to remember.
Security of credentials
The same authentication (or log in) process and security requirements are used for the Sign-In Partner credentials and the government-issued credential called GCKey. Your privacy is respected in that no personally identifiable information such as name, birth date, etc. is exchanged during the authentication process.
Each government service or program requests your personal information based on their specific requirements and to determine eligibility or entitlement. The Government of Canada must adhere to the Privacy Act and other legislation that restrict the information that can be shared between departments and agencies.
About using a Sign-In Partner
Sign-In Partners are private sector companies and organizations that have partnered with SecureKey Technologies to enable their customers to use their online credentials (e.g. card numbers or user names and passwords) to access Government of Canada services.
Currently there are ten Sign-In Partners:
- Affinity Credit Union
- BMO Financial Group
- CHOICE REWARDS MasterCard
- CIBC Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce
- Desjardins Group
- National Bank of Canada
- RBC Royal Bank
- TD Bank Group
It is anticipated that other Sign-In Partners will be added in the future, so keep checking the list of Sign-In Partners when you log in to access Government of Canada services.
Using online banking credentials
Your existing credentials, such as your online banking credential, are familiar as you may already use them on a regular basis. Using your credential from one of the Sign-In Partners to access government services is convenient as you don’t have to remember a different User ID and password.
To log in using a Sign-In Partner that is a financial institution or bank, you must be registered for online banking access. Contact your bank for assistance.
The safeguarding of Canadians’ information online is a priority for the Government of Canada and measures have been put in place to ensure secure online access which respects privacy. Your banking information is not shared when you use a Sign-In Partner.
The technology is designed in such a way that the Government of Canada will not know which Sign-In Partner (or financial institution) you have used. Similarly, the bank will not know which government department or agency its customer contacted. Also, the credential broker which facilitates this interaction will not know the identity of the individual or business.
The participating financial institutions and departments and agencies will not share any information that identifies individuals, as directed under privacy legislation.
Remember that when you use a Sign-In Partner, none of your banking or personally identifiable information is communicated to the government service you are trying to access and the Government of Canada will not know which Sign-In Partner you have used. Similarly, no information about the government service being accessed by the user will be shared with the user's Sign-In Partner.
A GCKey is a unique electronic credential (username and password) that allows you to communicate securely with online government services. The Government of Canada, as the service provider, issues these credentials to individuals so they can access government online services. The GCKey service can be used by clients who do not have, or choose not to use a credential they may have with one of the Sign-In Partners.
You are able to use your GCKey to access all available government online services with the exception of services offered by the Canada Revenue Agency. To access the CRA’s services, you must use one of the Sign-In Partners or register for a CRA user ID and password.
The GCKey service does not share your registration information with any third party. The information you provide is held by the Government of Canada and is protected under the Federal Privacy Act.
Individuals who do not have a credential with one of the Sign-In Partners can use the government-issued credential, GCKey. To register or sign up for a GCKey, go to the Government of Canada website that you would like to access and click on the “continue to GCKey” button when you are presented with the log in choice.
You can use a Sign-In Partner and a GCKey; by using a different credential to access each Government of Canada service. However, you will need to remember which credential you used with each of those services.
About the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) credential
You can continue to use your CRA user ID and password to access the CRA’s My Account for Individuals, My Business Account and Represent a Client online services. The CRA will continue to offer its own credential service. For more information, go to CRA login services.
You can use a Sign-In Partner with your online banking credential to access the CRA’s My Account for Individuals, My Business Account and Represent a Client online services. For more information go to CRA login services. Those who prefer to use a CRA user ID and password can continue to do so.
To access the CRA’s login services, you must either use one of the Sign-In Partners or register for a CRA user ID and password. For more information, go to CRA login services. You cannot use your GCKey to access CRA online.
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