Humanitarian ID is a new approach to contact management in humanitarian situations. We know that new ideas raise questions so we have answered many of the common ones below. If you have a question not answered below, do not hesitate to send us a quick email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Yes, of course. Obviously we ask that they are involved in humanitarian response or would be during a humanitarian crises. Simply send them an message with a link to our website – http://about.humanitarian.id – and encourage them to register and check in.
Your global profile is publicly discoverable, but you control what information you share. The availability of your crisis-specific details depends on the given situation. Some emergencies will have a public contact list. Others will be “secured” where only verified users can access the contact lists. We take security seriously and will err on the cautious side. Also see: What is verification and how do I get verified?
Each time you check into a crisis, you will need to create a local profile that is specific to that crisis. To help make this process easier, we provide you with the opportunity to create a “Global Profile” which serves as a template when creating a local profile. This feature makes it faster for you to populate your local profile when you have to quickly check into a crisis.
Yes, H.ID has been designed to allow you to do just that. We recognize that people can respond to multiple emergencies at one time. However, we encourage you to only check into crisis that you are actively responding to. The Humanitarian ID contact lists are currently aimed at supporting operational coordination in-crisis.
We recognize that you will want to create your own contact lists and not only filter a country list by for example an organization or location. ‘My Contact Lists’ let you create any list you want from contacts in Humanitarian ID. Create a list, give it whatever name you want, and start adding contacts. You can then share the list (URL) enabling others to Follow the list (which adds it to their dashboard for easy future access) or save or print it as a PDF.
Given that many humanitarian crisis unfortunately involve serious security concerns for responders, we knew that ensuring only trusted individuals could find your information in those situations. Therefore, in Humanitarian ID a given crisis can be “locked” thereby only allowing verfied users to find anyone inside the respective contact list.
Verification happens through a distributed model including three groups: UN-OCHA global information management officers, emergency-level UN-OCHA information management officers, and humanitarian cluster information management and cluster officers. Members of these groups can mark you as verified on H.ID thus giving you access to see contacts within “locked” crisis. Determining if a person is verified can happen through multiple approaches: personal acquaintance, work acquaintance, organization confirmation, etc.
You can find five security-related questions and their answers in this downloadable flyer.
Humanitarian ID works closely with the HumanitarianResponse.info project including leveraging their list of organizations. In order to get a new organization added, submit a simple form on their website. Additions will be available within 24-48 hours.
We will send you unobtrusive notifications of when we think that you may have left the emergency. You can also add your departure date to your local profile. This way you will receive a notification reminding you to check out.
We have conducted an early investigation of the use of automatic geolocation, but found that up to 30% of UN-OCHA offices appear in the wrong geographic location given their use of satellite connectivity for Internet. Therefore, we want to make sure we get our approach right and do not make your ever feel that we are pestering you.
Since Humanitarian ID is used to manage contact lists, managers and editors are able to manually add unregistered users to a specific contact list. This action sends an email (if provided) to you suggesting you register for Humanitarian ID and thereby manage your own contact details on lists.
At the moment, you are not able to change your login detail. However, we know that this ability is a requirement and we will work to add that ability. By joining our mailing list, you can receive regular project updates including when we introduce this feature
There are different scenarios which we expect that you may want to remove information from Humanitarian ID.
During a crisis, we know that you already receive what feels like too many emails. Although you will continue to receive emails, we expect that when people use Humanitarian ID, they will be able to find the right people to contact thereby reducing the times you receive unnecessary emails.
We also intend to find a way to allow you to subscribe and unsubscribe from crises-related email groups.
The Virtual OSOCC is intended to help early responders to collaborate and share information. Teams can specify if they plan or actually deploy. It is not intended to manage contact lists or give you control over your details in the contact list. Therefore, if you are responding to a humanitarian crisis, we encourage you to check-in on Humanitarian ID and make use of the Virtual OSOCC to share and find relevant response information (e.g. UNDAC activities, links to key documents, etc.)
We have found that Microsoft Excel changes the format of cells automatically when a long number is found (upon opening the CSV contacts export). The data remains valid until you save the file back into CSV. When re-opening the file, you will notice that Microsoft has replaced the last 5 digits of the phone number with 0s.
Our recommendation is to open original CSV file in Excel and immediately save the file in .xls format. No data is lost and you can continue editing as you would normally.
Of course, you could always switch to something like Libre Office which does not face these problems.
In many countries with a high increase of mobile phone users, new prefixes are being introduced by mobile phone operators. Whenever this happens, the above mentioned library needs to be updated. Unfortunately, this does not happen automatically.
If you are having trouble adding your phone number, please contact us immediately at email@example.com so that we can look into it.
There are three ways to add a profile picture:
The Humanitarian ID solution has been created and is maintained by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). OCHA freely provides the solution to the humanitarian community.
The system currently has three levels of management:
We also provide an Organization-level management role where focal points can modify any checked-in responders related to their respective organization.
We are currently focusing on creating the light-weight, mobile responsive web version. Given that there are many features and changes to make, this approach gives us a lot of flexibility including the ability to release multiple versions within a week. Once we are comfortable that the solution will not change on a high-frequency basis, we will build out native applications for a variety of mobile operating systems.
We promise that we will:
More technical security measures we have taken:
This information is also downloadable in pdf.
We saw two major problems with using the major (privately-owned) authentication services:
1) they are privately owned and we had no control over the data you would provide them, and
2) not everyone uses one of these given platforms. We wanted to provide a completely independent, non-commercial solution that has you at the heart – not a private company.
Plus, we are concerned about how your data is used.
The Humanitarian ID authentication mechanism is already the single authentication mechanism for HumanitarianResponse.info and ReliefWeb. We will be adding other websites in 2016. Join our mailing list to be notified as websites are added.
Send us an email and we will be in touch. firstname.lastname@example.org . Equally check out the documentation we provided so far for the H.ID authentication and the API key.
Yes! Humanitarian ID has been “open” from the very beginning. If you would like to contribute a feature (or extend) the solution, feel free to get in touch at email@example.com. We are planning to soon move everything to GitHub and start to outline ideas that the community can work on.