Self-Sovereign Identity: Your identity is your most valuable asset
Your identity is your most valuable asset
We have been talking about how diversifying, protecting and acquiring your assets internationally you can get a superior quality of life…
Today I will tell you about your most precious asset, the one you must pay more attention and effort to protect: your Identity.
We live in a society that is digitized. Our lives are increasingly linked to the internet and the digital space, thus our identities are moving online.
Our digital identities need to be proven, mostly with identity documents that are often stored in giant, vulnerable and centralized databases.
This is leading to increased data breaches and exposing more and more people to identity theft.
Centralized identity databases
Centralized databases storing a huge amount of identity data and documents are attractive to hackers.
Currently, our identities are managed by large agencies with questionable practices. These services often sell our data to the highest bidder, without our consent. Those centralized databases are also an attractive target for hackers exposing us to even more identity theft.
The Equifax data breach, where the personal data and documents of up to 143 million individuals may have been compromised highlighted the vulnerability of centralized databases and calls into question the continued practice of collecting large centralized sets of highly sensitive data.
But it’s not only Equifax. Every week a new case comes out: Facebook, India’s Aadhar system, Uber, Yahoo, JP Morgan Chase, Orbitz, MyFitnessPal or the Panama Papers and Paradise Papers, among many others.
In some instances, the citizens of entire countries (such as Sweden) have suffered potentially devastating personal data breaches.
Identity owners do not control their data. Instead, third parties control it and might misuse/not properly manage their customers’ identity data.
Self-Sovereign Identity: Own and control your Identity
This is why I started a not-for-profit organization, the SelfKey Foundation, to address these issues and bring a totally different identity management approach where identity owners truly own, manage and control their own digital identity: Self-Sovereign Identity.
SelfKey is private and secure by design.
Using blockchain technology we are building an Identity Wallet capable of holding your digital ID profile, your identity attributes and your documents stored locally on your device.
As your identity remains stored locally instead of in a centralized database the chances of it suffering an attack are lower, as the reward for the hacker is minimal. No server and no database ever hold your data.
You are the only one responsible for your identity. You have full sovereignty over your identity.
Through your cryptographic key pairing (private and public) you will be able to digitally sign documents, request identity checks and document certification from certifiers such as notaries on the network and securely share those certified documents with banks and other providers to apply for their products and services.
Furthermore, we are implementing a “verified claims” protocol in order to achieve a greater level of privacy.
This consists on a certifier signature stored on the blockchain stating that a given identity claim (such as “I am over 18” or “I am German”) is true, which will allow you to apply for digital services without requiring to share your actual ID documents.
These digital identity attestations and e-notarizations can be re-used to apply for multiple financial and immigration services, making KYC processes easy, more secure, hassle-free and straightforward.
We are also building a financial and immigration services marketplace so you can use your Identity Wallet to incorporate a company, apply for a bank account or exchange account or apply for citizenship and residency by investment with just a few clicks. We’ve made a demo for you to see its potential!
I am very excited about this new project and I wanted to share it with you. We have already launched the first alpha version of the Identity Wallet and we are testing it within our community. If you are interested or want to join the project, you can visit our official site: selfkey.org.
My mission as an entrepreneur is to provide content and services (like Flag Theory) and build tools (like SelfKey) to allow individuals to find and secure more freedom and privacy.
I understand that being free is not to involuntarily delegate the control of our identity to third parties that could misuse our most sensitive data. It is ourselves and ourselves alone that should truly own our identities.
I will be happy if you join our SelfKey Foundation community to make our Self-sovereign Identity vision a reality.
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