(https://www.orbs.com/defining-the-public-blockchain/)). Arguably, there is no area in which guarantees are needed more than our online identity and personal data. Online services made our lives easier in many ways, but these benefits far too often come at the expense of our privacy. Blockchain can change that, and by doing so, it would enable us to finally gain control of our digital identity.
One of the oldest problems of the internet is digital identity. We still don’t have a way to prove who we are online and to share verified credentials such as age, bank details and driver’s license without physical documents or face-to-face contact.
Trying to solve this problem through a centralized service failed so far, and a prime reason for that is the fear of letting one entity control so much personal data. So we need a way to supply digital proofs about ourselves, control by none other than us.
The concept of self-sovereign identity (SSI), control of digital identity by its owner, has been around for years, but with blockchain can finally be materialized. Initial services such as Sovrin and uPort are taking their first steps in this space, and recently Microsoft also announced a solution based on the Bitcoin network.
I believe that due to its public nature, high scale, and low predictable costs, Orbs would be the ideal blockchain for Digital Identity. Orbs’ core team designed a product concept that takes what’s available in the market to a new level, enhancing trust and minimizing fraud.
The solution is comprised of two main elements:
Identity wallet: A user-controlled application that stores all your verified identity credentials, which are digitally signed by their respective issuers (governments, banks, health providers, universities, etc).
Orbs-based verification network: A blockchain network through which entities relying on those credentials can verify their authenticity and validity.
Determining which entities and credentials are genuine and which are fraudulent is the main challenge for a decentralized identity system. The solution adds two mechanisms that increase trust in credentials and minimize fraudulent behavior:
The prospect of true digital identities is exciting but has been slow to get off the ground. I believe that blockchain is the missing link and that Orbs has the potential to be the go-to blockchain for this space. We are working with several partners make it a reality and will update as this work progresses.