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Digital Certification – New IMCA Certificate Formats

IMCA has updated the format of certificates issued under its certification schemes. This information note sets out details to help IMCA members and certificate holders recognise and understand the new formats.

Digital-first approach

As part of its digital transformation programme, an online certificate verification portal launched in August 2021, as set out in information note 1571.  The portal is available at https://www.imca-int.com/verify

Members are strongly encouraged to include use of the portal in their procedures as part of a wider competence assurance process, including checking:

  • the identity of the holder, by matching the name and photograph shown in the portal results
  • the validity of certificates presented
  • that CPD completion and revalidation, where required, are in-date.

Through online verification, the risk associated with forged physical certificates is significantly reduced. The new certificate formats described below include a direct, personalised QR code link to the verification portal. Users are advised to check that the results page genuinely directs to the above IMCA address with website security verified in their web browser.

The secretariat’s certification team remains available to provide support and manual verification where an online response is not yet possible.

Certificate design

Two updated certificates have been produced – an A4 certificate and a physical card (see 3). The A4 certificate provides full details on the certificate type and holder, information on terms and conditions, and the personalised QR code for verification. A sample of each is shown below:

Physical cards

Newly qualified diving supervisors and LST certificate holders will continue to be issued with the new-style plastic card at present. However, physical cards will not be issued for new certifications, such as Accredited Diving Systems Inspector, and will no longer be issued to DP practitioners.

Existing certificates and cards remain valid and there is no need for them to be replaced. Any individual wishing to receive a replacement card in the new style, with the QR code for verification, will be able to order one (cost is £75) via their website account from next month (see 4).

Availability

The new certificates are now in use and are being issued to newly certified individuals for all positions.

Existing certificate holders will soon be able to download a new digital certificate (A4 version) via their personal IMCA website account (https://www.imca-int.com/account/certification/) in line with the following guidance. There is no charge for obtaining this updated digital certificate.

  • Air and Bell Diving Supervisors

Any diving supervisor currently registered for the CPD system will shortly be able to download a new PDF certificate via their website account, which will have been used for registration or revalidation.

As CPD is now a mandatory requirement for diving supervisors, digital certificates and replacement physical cards will not be available to those not registered for the CPD system, other than for any diving supervisor following the alternative CPD route.

  • DP Practitioners

Existing Company DP Authority and DP Trials & Assurance Practitioner certificate holders with a linked website account will shortly be able to download an updated PDF certificate via their website account.

Those who have not yet linked a website account to their certification record will be prompted to complete a short registration form, uploading a photograph and proof of identity.

  • Life Support Technicians

As many LSTs were certified prior to implementation of our current systems, certificate holders will normally be prompted to complete a short registration form via the website account area, uploading a photograph, proof of identity and a scan of their certificate.

The secretariat is currently completing verification of photographs and identity information uploaded during the revalidation process for diving supervisor CPD, then will address any newly submitted requests. Individuals will receive email notification once their certificate is available for downloading, beginning in December 2021.

For more information, please contact [email protected]

Information Note Details

Published date: 8 December 2021
Information note ID: 1589

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IMCA makes every effort to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data contained in the documents it publishes, but IMCA shall not be liable for any guidance and/or recommendation and/or statement herein contained. The information contained in this document does not fulfil or replace any individual’s or Member's legal, regulatory or other duties or obligations in respect of their operations. Individuals and Members remain solely responsible for the safe, lawful and proper conduct of their operations.