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Identity protection suite WISeID 6 uses a blockchain for ID storage and validation

[WISeID]( is a personal security application for smartphones that gives users control over their personal information. “Only the user determines which identification attributes are shared with social media, credit cards, merchant sites etc,” the company claims.

WISeID is a personal security application for smartphones that gives users control over their personal information. “Only the user determines which identification attributes are shared with social media, credit cards, merchant sites etc,” the company claims.

The application, from Geneva-based security giant WISeKey, also acts as an encrypted messenger app, password vault, a secure password generator, and a multi-device data synchronizer on a secure cloud network. To strengthen security, the app requires users to pass a facial recognition check before accessing any sensitive areas.

The newest iteration of of the WISeID app, version 6, includes a public blockchain. App users act as peers, and each downloads a copy of the blockchain. Acting as a “dual factor authentication technology that sits on top of a BlockChain,” there is no cryptocurrency or token residing on this ledger, just user data.

Also known as the ‘WISeID BlockChain app,’ it protects user’s digital identity by allowing third parties to “validate that the original Identity or Attribute certifications provided by a Third Trusted Party has not been changed or misrepresented,” according to the company.

There’s a software development kit (SDK) for third party developers, currently available for Windows, Mac OSX, Android, iPhone, iPad, and Kindle. One of the first companies to use it is the jewelry and fashion icon BVLGARI, on their own identity application called the BVLGARI Vault.

Swiss parent company WiseKey (“WISeKey”: WIHN.SW) is a cybersecurity company with over 16 years of experience creating online digital identities. The company is well known for deploying digital identity systems for Internet of Things ecosystems, and designs identity systems for physical, mobile, and web infrastructures.

The World Economic Forum, who mentioned identity as an important use case for blockchains recently, recognizes WISeKey as a “Global Growth Company.” WISeKey products have been on the frontier of cryptography since 1999. Over 2.6 billion desktop, browsers, mobile devices, SSL certificates, and Internet of Things’ devices have used WISeKey solutions, according to the company. At the root of each of these programs is a highly encrypted security core called the OISTE-WISeKey Cryptographic Root of Trust (RoT).

RoT is patented system described as “ubiquitous and universal,” and a “pioneer in the creation of Digital Identities.” It integrates WISeKey products, including IoT nodes, smartphone apps, and even wearables, with encrypted authentication and identification data. The system acts as a common trust anchor, helping them become far more secure through the use of public/private key encryption with multiple keys, face recognition, finger print biometrics and two-factor authentication,.

WISeKey logo“With the cryptographic RoT embedded on the device, the IoT product manufacturers can use code-signing certificates and a cloud-based signature as a service to secure interactions among objects and between objects and people.”
— – WISeKey

The global lack of personal identification documentation is a problem that affects the poorest fifth of the world’s population, stopping them from gaining access to basic services like education and healthcare.

A decade ago Bill and Hillary Clinton’s foundation initiated the Clinton Global Initiative, “to issue 1 billion identities to poor people.” Shortly thereafter, WISeKey committed to creating a platform for the initiative that could enable the poor to do mobile payments. “1.5 billion people have no proper legal identification, and 50 million children are born every year without a birth certificate and legal identity,” the company explains.

The WISeID Blockchain has since been submitted as a technology solution for the United Nation’s sustainable development goals, which aim to provide every last person on the planet with a fully secure and tamper-proof digital identity by 2030.

The initiative was launched at the ID2020 Summit in New York this May, at a talk titled “Harnessing Digital Identity for the Global Community.” According to WISeID, the UN’s first step is to develop a scalable identity system by 2020, and the company designed their service with this goal in mind.

ID2020 logo“ID2020 brings together industry leaders, NGOs, governments, emerging technology pioneers and cross-industry experts from both the public and private sectors.”
— – ID2020

WISeID isn’t the only product tackling the problem. Microsoft announced a collaboration with Blockstack Labs, ConsenSys and developers across the globe to “produce a cross-chain identity solution that can be extended to any future blockchains or new kinds of decentralized, distributed systems,” according to Microsoft.

Shocard is a mobile-based digital identity ‘card’ that gives users a way to show their ID so securely that banks can rely on it. A partnership with the air transport industries’ SITA has extended Shocard’s usefulness to travel documents as well.

At the other end of the spectrum, Blockstack, formerly known as OneName, uses the bitcoin blockchain to store social profile identity information like twitter, facebook, a bitcoin address, and other data the user adds to his or her profile. “The largest, most popular blockchain identity system, with 50,000 registered identities,” as described by Blockstack, has been expanding into a whole framework, with APIs for developers to include its’ identity information into any application imaginable.

An open source protocol for decentralized, stateless identity cards from BitNation, the “world citizen ID,” is perhaps the easiest ID to obtain, although it doesn’t connect to any state-issued ID at all. The system relies on witnesses to be named, having them confirm that you are who you say you are at the time of ID generation.


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