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Disclosure (Scotland) Act 2020

Evidence of identity

Section 57: Evidence of identity

119.Ensuring that an identity presented is an actual person, and that the individual presenting the identity is entitled to use the identity on an application, are critical to avoid misuse of disclosures, such as a disclosure being issued to someone in an identity that is not their own. Section 57 allows Ministers to require an applicant to provide evidence that they are who they say they are, and Ministers do not need to consider an application if that evidence is not forthcoming, or other requirements set by Ministers are not met, of if they are not satisfied by the evidence as to the applicant’s identity.

Section 58: Power to use personal data to check identity

120.Section 58 supports Ministers’ powers to verify an applicant’s identity by enabling enquiries to be made of a number of public bodies, including the Registrar General for Scotland, the Keeper of the Records of Scotland and Ministers in certain UK Government Departments. Subsection (2)(d) gives Ministers a power by regulations, subject to negative procedure, to prescribe other organisations to support the authentication of the identity of disclosure applicants.

Section 59: Power to use fingerprints to check identity

121.Section 59 gives Ministers the option of using fingerprints to verify the identity of an applicant. This power will only be used in cases where other means of authentication have been unsuccessful, for instance where the Scottish Ministers cannot otherwise match an applicant to a criminal record held in central records. The process will be governed by regulations subject to the negative procedure. Ministers can refuse to consider a disclosure application in cases where the applicant refuses to provide fingerprints. Ministers must ensure the destruction of fingerprints taken for assisting the authentication of identity, once that task is completed.

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Explanatory Notes

Text created by the Scottish Government to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Acts of the Scottish Parliament except those which result from Budget Bills.


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