Here are the most common questions we receive about BCeID. If you have a question that is not answered here, please contact us.
General BCeID Questions
Why are there different types of BCeID accounts?
Different government services have different needs when it comes to things such as privacy, security and information sharing.
Information you provide or access can range from public to highly confidential. For example, business contact information is legally considered public information, while personal contact information is not. Privacy laws protect personal information (for individuals) differently than business information.
Privacy and security legislation and best practices require the BCeID Program to protect the privacy and security of data when using online government services. The different types of BCeID accounts balance the need to provide ease of access with appropriate privacy and security protection.
I am a Free Miner. What type of BCeID do I need?
You need to get a Business BCeID to access Mineral Titles Online, even if you're a sole proprietorship.
I am a Sole Proprietor. What type of BCeID do I need?
For services that require the business' or organization's identity to be verified, you'll need a Business BCeID, even if you're a sole proprietor.
Proprietorships are generally self-employed individuals that perform all the business functions, and assume the liabilities. Even if you haven't registered as a business with BC Registries and Online Services, another province's equivalent, or the Canada Revenue Agency, you're still operating a business.
Examples of businesses that are often proprietorships include:
- Free Mining
- Operating a child care facility
- Operating as an independent fishing guide
The type of BCeID you need depends on the service you want to use. To find out what type you need:
- Find the service in the service directory. Many of the services that use BCeID are listed in the directory.
- If you can't find the service in the directory, check with the service provider and they'll be able to tell you the type you need.
Does my BCeID password expire?
Yes. It expires two years from the time it was created or last changed.
What do I do if I forgot my user ID or password?
At the screen where you log in, click “Forgot your user ID or password?” You'll be taken to a screen where you can reset your password or find your user ID.
What if I forget my password and the challenge answers?
If you're a business user, you can contact your Business Profile Manager(s) or Business Account Manager(s). You can search the BCeID Business Directory for their contact information.
For Personal BCeID, contact the BCeID Help Desk. You may need to visit a BCeID Point of Service location.
If you're a Basic BCeID user, you'll need to register for a new Basic BCeID.
Can I change my password or user ID?
Yes. Both items can be changed in the Manage Account section of the site when you are logged in.
What is verifying an identity?
Verifying the identity of an individual or business is the process by which an individual, business or organization is able to prove who they are. The type of verification necessary depends on the type of BCeID account being registered for.
We'll tell you during registration if identity verification is required for your BCeID account.
Depending on the type of BCeID account you register for, identity verification may require:
- visiting a BCeID Point of Service
- entering an activation code mailed to the verified address
- speaking with a BCeID Identity Services Analyst
Why are there different identity requirements for Personal and Business BCeID?
Personal BCeID is typically used by individuals to access services, such as Revenue Services of British Columbia, in a personal capacity. Business BCeID is typically used by one or more individuals representing a business or organization to access business-related services, such as Mineral Titles Online.
These two types of BCeID have different privacy, security and data sharing characteristics. For example, business contact information is legally considered public information, while personal contact information is not.
The goal of verifying your identity for Personal BCeID is to ensure that only you can set up an account that can access your personal information. The goal of verifying a business for Business BCeID is to confirm business information is accurate and that the individual requesting it is authorized and can be identified.
Why do I need to visit a BCeID Point of Service location?
If some sort of identity verification is required to complete your registration request for a Personal or Business BCeID, an authorized BCeID agent needs to confirm that the information provided during registration matches the appropriate identity documents.
Are there BCeID Point of Service locations outside British Columbia?
No. All BCeID Point of Service locations are currently in British Columbia only.
How long do I have to visit a BCeID Point of Service location after completing registration?
You have 60 days to present your identity documents in-person for Personal BCeID, and 90 days for Business BCeID. Business BCeID registration requests edited within the last 30 days of the 90-day period are extended for 30 days from the date the request was edited.
Why are only Canadian identity documents accepted?
We currently don't have the ability to verify identity documents such as birth certificates or passports from other countries.
Does my identification have to include my middle or other names?
When completing the registration request, the Middle Name field is not required; but if you fill it in, your identity documents must match. Names filled in the Other field are also not required and do not need to appear on identification documents.
Basic BCeID Questions
Can a Basic BCeID by converted into a Business or Personal BCeID?
Yes. When you register for a Business or Personal BCeID you'll have the opportunity to convert an existing Basic BCeID, allowing you to keep your user ID.
Note that some services only accept Basic BCeID, and converting one may result in loosing access to that service until you create another Basic BCeID.
I have a Basic BCeID. Can I also have a Personal and Business BCeID?
Yes. While you are limited to one Personal BCeID, you can have multiple Basic and Business BCeIDs.
Business BCeID Questions
My business or organization has many people. Do we all register?
No. A single business or organization may only be registered once. However, this type of account allows you to create additional Business BCeID user accounts for people who may access online service on the business or organization's behalf.
How is a business or organization's identity verified?
It depends on what type of business you're registering how you'll complete this step. Learn more about how to verify a business.
During registration for a Business BCeID, you'll be asked for certain information depending on the type of business and how or if it's registered. The BCeID registration system will attempt to verify the business information automatically.
If successful, your new Business BCeID is ready to use. If the system is not successful, additional methods may be used, depending on your particular scenario.
You may be asked to visit a BCeID Point of Service location in-person to complete the verification process.
An activation code and instructions may be mailed to the Chief Financial Officer of the business at the address verified through an authoritative source, such as BC Registries and Online Services.
Or, if none of these three works, a BCeID Identity Services Analyst will contact you by phone or email to discuss your request and determine a suitable authoritative source to verify your business or organization's identity.
Why did I get a Basic BCeID when I registered for a Business BCeID?
A Basic BCeID was created because BCeID was not able to verify the identity of your business during your online registration.
Your Basic BCeID will be automatically converted into a Business BCeID when the identity is verified by the method indicated on your Business BCeID Registration Request Confirmation.
It depends on what type of business you're registering how you'll verify your business. Learn more about how to verify a business.
If you do not successfully complete your registration and/or identity verification, your Business BCeID request expires but the Basic BCeID created during registration remains active for three years. You may use your Basic BCeID to access online services that require customers to have a Basic BCeID.
Can a Business BCeID be converted to a Personal BCeID?
No. BCeID does not allow a Business BCeID to be converted to a Personal BCeID. The authentication methods and authoritative sources that are used to verify the unique identity of an individual are different and distinct from those used to verify the unique identity of a business.
What is the Business BCeID Account Management Guide?
The Business BCeID Account Management Guide explains how to use the account management tool to perform tasks such as:
- creating new accounts for your employees
- assigning roles to accounts
- activating subscriptions to online government services
- updating business information
- setting preferences for sharing contact information with other businesses
What is a Business Profile Manager (BPM)?
This is the person who can manage all aspects of the Business BCeID, such as adding and removing users, updating business information, activating subscriptions to online services, and more. By default, this is the person that registers for the Business BCeID, and additional people can be assigned the role. The Business BCeID Account Management Guide has details about this role and tools.
What is a Business Accounts Manager (BAM)?
This is a role that can perform account-related duties, such as adding and removing users or resetting passwords. This role is assigned to one or more individuals by the Business Profile Manager. The Business BCeID Account Management Guide has details about this role and tools.
What do I do when people with accounts leave my business or organization?
We suggest that an individual's Business BCeID account be deleted when they leave and online services notified, but this is at your discretion. An individual's Business BCeID account can be transferred to another business also registered with BCeID. The Business BCeID Account Management Guide has details.
What do I do if the Business Profile Manager or Business Accounts Manager leave or are unavailable?
It is recommended that the initial Business Profile Manager – the one that requested the Business BCeID – assign at least one other person as an alternate Business Profile Manager. So long as there is at least one Business Profile Manager available, the Business Accounts Manager role can be assigned or re-assigned as needed.
If there is no Business Profile Manager available, contact the BCeID Help Desk.
What do I need to consider if I'm buying or selling a business with an existing Business BCeID?
The seller should provide the buyer with a Business Profile Manager account. The buyer can remove the seller's account once the purchase is complete.
Personal BCeID Questions
Why did I get a Basic BCeID when I registered for a Personal BCeID?
When you register for a Personal BCeID, a Basic BCeID and a request for a Personal BCeID are created.
Your identity must be verified and your request for a Personal BCeID must be approved by an authorized BCeID Agent at a BCeID Point of Service location within 60 days of registering online for a Personal BCeID.
If your identity cannot be verified successfully, your Personal BCeID request expires but the Basic BCeID created during registration remains active for three years. You may use your Basic BCeID to access services that require customers to have a Basic BCeID.
Can a Personal BCeID be converted to a Business BCeID?
No. BCeID does not allow a Personal BCeID to be converted to a Business BCeID. The authentication methods and authoritative sources that are used to verify the unique identity of an individual are different and distinct from those used to verify the unique identity of a business.
What identity documents do I bring to a BCeID Point of Service location?
You must bring the identity documents you selected during registration, as well as any supporting documents that explain name differences between documents, such as a marriage certificate.
Will a laminated birth certificate be accepted as an identity document for BCeID?
Laminated certificates are accepted as long as they:
- were issued by a Canadian province
- don't contain the words “Void if Laminated” or similar
I go by different names. What identity documents do I have to present?
If BCeID detects discrepancies in given and surnames during registration, you will be provided with information on what identity documents you'll need to present when you visit a BCeID Point of Service location. You will need to bring documents that support and explain the name differences.
Accepted supporting documents are:
- Marriage Certificate
- Proof of Marriage Certificate issued by a church or Marriage Commissioner
- Change of Name Certificate issued by a Canadian province or territory
Divorce certificates only prove the dissolution of a marriage and are not accepted to support name changes or differences.
Can I correct a Personal BCeID registration request?
If your request has not expired, you can log in to the BCeID website with the user ID and password you created during registration to make changes.
If your request has expired, you'll need to re-register.
Can I cancel my Personal BCeID registration?
Yes. You can cancel your registration request anytime until the request expires. Log in to the BCeID website with the user ID and password you created during registration to cancel your registration.
Can I have more than one Personal BCeID?
No. You are only allowed one Personal BCeID. You can have multiple Basic and Business BCeIDs in addition.
Does a Personal BCeID account expire?
Yes. Personal BCeID accounts expire after three years. You can renew your account before it expires, or re-register after it expires.
How do I renew my Personal BCeID account?
To renew your account, you'll need to have your identity verified by an agent at a BCeID Point of Service location. You can do this any time before your account expires. If your account has expired, you'll need to re-register.
Subscription Code Questions
What is a subscription code?
A subscription code pre-authorizes you to directly access a specific government service. Subscription codes are provided by the services themselves and may come in the form of an invitation by mail or email. BCeID does not provide subscription codes.
Do subscription codes expire?
Yes. You'll find expiry dates in the Manage Account section of the BCeID website. The date may also appear in the invitation you received.
I have two invitations with subscription codes from the same service. What should I do?
If you want to know whether to activate both codes or just the newest one, check the latest invitation for possible direction. If there are no instructions, then contact the service.