Experts in blockchain have long argued that cryptocurrency is the most boring thing you can do with the technology, and we tend to agree.
The nature of a blockchain makes it great for things such as smart contracts and, in the case of today’s story, proving who you are.
We all know the dance of opening an account in South Africa which requires you prove who you are and where you stay and Gemalto, together with R3, could make that dance less laborious than it currently is.
This is thanks to Trust ID Network which lets users take control of their identity and use it for ecommerce, banking and government services. This technology essentially removes the need for you to carry around paper to prove your identity and other aspects of your life.
Gemalto explains, “With Trust ID Network, user control is facilitated via the ID Wallet, a convenient and secure mobile app. Here users can add personal data to their digital identity, have it certified, and give consent to share it with chosen service providers. Only ‘attestations’ issued by trusted parties are stored on the blockchain, keeping personal data under sole control of users.”
There are two key things to take from this. The first is that you could potentially open an app and share your identity, place of residence and other personal info easily with an entity that requires that. Need to open a new SIM contract but don’t have your proof of residence on you? Trust ID solves that problem. At the airport and you forgot your ID? Trust ID will help you prove who you are.
The more important thing, however, is that you have control over your data.
“Trust ID Network solves the profound weaknesses of traditional, ‘siloed’ identity frameworks: the clumsy user experience, rising costs and difficulties in complying with stricter regulations. It’s the perfect illustration of Gemalto’s ability to combine proven Digital Identity solutions and new technologies such as the blockchain,” executive vice president of banking and payment at Gemalto, Bertrand Knopf said in a statement.
“Financial institutions are best-placed to lead this self-sovereign identity revolution, but it will prove similarly attractive to a wide array of other service providers,” Knopf concludes.
The Trust ID network is currently being piloted in South Africa so there’s no word on whether this tech will roll out to the masses anytime soon but the tech is here, we just need stakeholders to jump on board.