1. What is the vision and mission of 1Kosmos BlockID?
Our mission is to revolutionize identity management by enabling people and companies to escape from the legacy systems of paper-based documents and move into a true digital identity with unprecedented privacy, security, transparency, and individual rights by leveraging the power of blockchain technology.
BlockID by 1Kosmos enables people to store their identity data – their driver’s license, passport, credit or debit cards, insurance cards, employee ID, professional or educational credentials, and more – in a secure digital identity safe way on their own mobile devices, and provide it easily to those who need to access and validate it.
BlockID eliminates usernames and passwords, which can be hacked or stolen. Instead, it allows people to use their face, voice or fingerprint to access online services such as banking or email. More importantly, BlockID puts people in control of their own identity data by allowing them to determine what information is shared and with whom it’s shared.
2. Why is trustworthy digital identity critical for existing and emerging markets?
Today user identities exist in many different forms including:
One of the objectives is to combine these identities into a single, portable, digital identity based on the following principles:
Control – A user must have control of their identity information – controlling who can modify it, and authorizing who can see it and what they can see. They should be able to withhold or approve access as owner of their own identity information.
Transparency and Persistence – Users must have access to their own data and be able to easily verify and consent on how their data is used with no hidden data and no gatekeepers. All user actions and authorizations must be captured on an immutable ledger to maintain transparency and security.
Portability and Interoperability – Information and services about the identity must be transportable and available across international boundaries / third party services without a single vendor locking in or storing user data in a central database. A BCIAM solution is not completely decentralized if the architecture allows part of the user identity to be stored by a singular third party, even if it’s a trusted entity that is expected to work in the best interest of the user. Being part of a centralized service raises the question of vendor lock in and security issues that have been plaguing traditional siloed IAM solutions.
Protection – The rights and privacy of the user are to be protected. The information stored should never be available for consumption by any party without the consent of the user managing their identity.
3. How will digital identity transform the Canadian and global economy? How does 1Kosmos BlockID address challenges associated with this transformation?
The two greatest obstacles to developing secure web services are verifying the user’s identity and securing their identity data.
Today, businesses and governments rely largely on paper-based documents, which can’t easily be used for online services, or usernames and passwords, which are easily hacked or stolen. Every service provider must build and maintain its own siloed identity management system – a costly and inefficient practice. Protections on these systems are wildly inconsistent, ranging from strong to barely existent. Users have little or no control over their own identity data, which is essentially owned by the dozens of services a user interacts with that collect and store it. The identity data itself can be full of inaccuracies, inconsistencies or outdated information because there are dozens or even hundreds of copies and no single authoritative source of the truth.
BlockID removes these obstacles. It eliminates the need for each service provider to validate or store user credentials, and uses the power of blockchain technology to help eliminate fraud and ensure the validity and accuracy of the user’s identity information.
The user’s identity information is first independently verified by trusted third parties, then encrypted and stored on the public blockchain as well as in a secure, digital wallet on the user’s mobile device. The data is encrypted using a public key; only the holder of the corresponding private key can decrypt it – and therefore only the holder of the private key can be the credential’s true owner. Because the encrypted identity data on the public blockchain is immutable – that is, it can’t be modified after the fact – it’s guaranteed to be authentic and accurate, and no single business or government entity controls it.
This can transform the Canadian economy – and indeed the global economy – by creating a universally recognized trusted digital ID that enables businesses and governments to securely identify users, helping to eliminate fraud (for both business and consumers), eliminate “fake” accounts, and protect the privacy of users. It can speed identify verification, allowing businesses to comply with Know-Your-Customer (KYC) requirements in seconds rather than days or weeks – all without having to implement costly and redundant identity management systems or inefficient manual processes to handle the task.
4. What else should we know about 1Kosmos BlockID?
Since forming 1Kosmos in 2016, we have added some of the leading minds in identity management on our staff and board of advisors. We have multiple financial and telecommunications customers using our solution, and analysts have called the BlockID Solution the most complete solution in digital portable identity.