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New European partnerships strengthen transition to digital identity

New European partnerships strengthen transition to digital identity

A further flurry of Europe-centric partnerships shows increasing collaboration and alignment of ideas for the future of digital identities and attempts to carve out a path for self-sovereign, decentralized identity within the EU framework.

In the last few days, IDnow joined IDunion, Keyless joined the Dizme Foundation and the Sovrin Foundation endorsed the European Self-Sovereign Identity Consortium. The announcements follow soon after the EU’s announcement of a European Digital Identity and a digital wallet to house it, a project hoped to propel the uptake and application of virtual identity.

IDnow joins IDunion

IDnow is a platform for verifying identities and is a leading provider for biometric video and e-signature identification. The IDunion is a coalition for decentralized identity management, albeit with an alignment with European values and regulations.

IDnow is joining the IDunion according to a release which quotes Armin Bauer, Managing Director Technology and Co-Founder of IDnow, as saying: “The introduction of a digital identity solution is an important and necessary step for Europe. After the publication of the EU decision on the EU Digital Identity Wallet, we now need to think about a unified infrastructure”.

IDnow is already involved in technologies for implementing digital wallets compliant with eIDAS, the EU framework for interoperability across national ID systems.

“IDnow is ideally positioned to provide all citizens and companies with an identity within the framework of a digital identity wallet in the future,” states the release. “Within IDunion, IDnow’s goal is to make the wallet technology compatible with the standards of the IDunion network.”

IDnow recently merged with Ariadnext to create a pan-European biometric digital identity platform and is reported to be searching for further acquisitions.

Germany recently selected IDunion for the second phase of its innovation competition “Showcase Secure Digital Identities,” an event promoting the development of digital solutions for identity management in Germany.

Keyless joins Dizme

London-based Keyless is developing a decentralized biometric authentication and personal identity management with a focus on user privacy. It has recently been certified for FIDO compliance.

The DizmeID Foundation brings together players to develop self-sovereign identity and ensure it is compliant with existing regulations. Its app Dizme provides distributed digital identity via blockchain technology. Users can control exactly who sees what aspects of their identity such as allowing a potential employer to see a verified digital degree certificate.

By joining the DizmeID Foundation, Keyless notes intends to make its decentralized offering more intuitive for users as well as provide more privacy, according to a release.

“Many users find the idea of blockchain services intimidating and that has caused adoption of this revolutionary technology to be painfully slow. We hope that by integrating with Dizme, that our biometric software will make it more intuitive for users to enroll,” said Andrea Carmignani, co-founder and chief executive officer at Keyless Technologies, “and begin benefitting from the services offered on its decentralized identity platform.”

Sovrin endorses ESSIC

The Sovrin Foundation, which governs the decentralized global Sovrin Network for allowing self-sovereign identity (SSI) on the internet, has formally endorsed the European Self-Sovereign Identity Consortium’s blockchain-enabled ‘network of networks’, according to its website.

“The Sovrin Foundation strongly supports the ESSIC focus on interoperability between SSI initiatives and shall continue to sponsor the growth of SSI through a network of networks.”

The ESSIC network of networks  aims to connect identity schemes technically and in terms of governance, including across borders. To achieve this, ESSIC hopes to create an overall European Governance structure to bring interoperability to blockchain-based ID systems that would allow greater privacy to users.

Data protection and privacy are an increasingly hot topic in Europe. A recent report commissioned by the EDRi found that the bloc is heading towards ‘open-ended biometric mass surveillance’.

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