Sharering, a special platform that lets its users create and use their own identity records, says that millions of people can’t access the internet yet. This is because they don’t have the right documents to prove who they are – like refugees do. Without these “verifiable” credentials, some people cannot get important information online that may make their lives better.
Reinventing Digital Identity Management with Self-Sovereign Control
To help people who don’t have much, tech companies have come up with a way to show who they are online. It’s called self-sovereign digital identity and it makes sure that individuals stay in control of their own data.
Even though this technology is still new, a lot of organisations like non-profits have started using it. As an example, the UK based organisation Unconnected.org which helps people get access to the internet has teamed up with Sharering recently.
Unconnected.org is working on a project to help one billion people access the internet. They think that with self-sovereign digital identities which are capable of being confirmed, it can help remove any obstacles in getting the data that people need.
Some people think that digital identities like these can have problems, but the CEO of Sharering, Tim Bos, believes that if lots of work and changes are put in, they can help to verify identities online.
Bos was asked a few questions by CryptokenTop News via Telegram and he shared his thoughts on ways that could help the regulators and the government understand what Sharering and others want to do with digital selves. Here is what Bos said in response.
CryptokenTop News ecently announced that Sharering has become partners with unconnected.org, an organization which wants to make sure everyone around the world is able to get online and access information. The goal of this partnership is to help 1 billion people gain access to the internet. Could you explain more about this partnership and why supporting this goal is important?
The internet is a huge place with a lot of information and it connects people from all over the world. But, as the web continues to grow, our identity or how we’re known online becomes more important too.
We decided to help unconnected.org because of their goal to give 1 billion people access to the internet. But most of these people don’t have enough technology to use the internet in a meaningful way.
Sharering wants to help people who don’t have access to the internet. For instance, refugees (people who ran away from their home country) need some kind of digital identity that can be recognized by people in new countries. This is so they can be part of the new communities they move into. Unconnected.org and Sharering team up to make this possible by providing digital identities for these underserved communities.
Do you think that more people will manage their own digital identities in the future? Self-custody of one’s identity means having control over your own data, like banking and personal information. Supporters of this idea say it’s going to be very popular as we go further into the digital age.
People talk a lot about having control over their own digital tokens, wallets and things like that. We think it’s more than just that – we need to be able to take charge of our personal documents too: our passports, driver’s licenses and medical certificates. All these are used to create our digital identity.
We think that giving out too much information about ourselves has gone too far. We don’t have control over our own data anymore. A lot of the time, bad guys get access to our info and use it for something wrong.
Digital identities, which are based on blockchain technology, could have different outcomes depending on how regulators view them. Since this is the case, what are you and other people in the same sector doing to make sure that powerful organizations or individuals get the facts about your work and goals?
Sharering won’t do anything with someone’s identity without their permission and full control. This is because our mission is to avoid complicated and time-consuming activities while also making sure that our users have a high level of security, trust and ownership when it comes to their personal information – it’s not us telling them how they should use their identities, but rather the users deciding what they want to do with it themselves.
We think it’s not right that you should have to share lots of information in order to get a good or service. For example, when I sign up for something, the website usually asks me for more details than it needs. Say I only need to prove that I am 18 or above – why do they want my full name, address, driver’s license and passport number then?
We think everyone should be able to answer “Yes, I’m over 18” without giving away more personal information. This means that users can stay in charge of the verification process and whenever they decide to share any information using Sharering technology, they will always get a notification and they’ll know exactly which data or personal details are being shared before anything actually happens.
People say that digital identities that are in control of the user themselves can give them more security and freedom to share their data when they want. But some people don’t agree because they think managing personal data and permissions may be too complicated for the average person. They don’t think the advantages of this kind of identity are enough to outweigh its drawbacks. How would you respond?
We’ve been working really hard to build something that works for everyone. We wanted to make sure we had a way so that everyday people could use the solution we created. Lots of testing has helped us get to this point.
Sharering app sometimes need you to prove something about yourself or sign-up for services. It will ask simple questions like: Do you want to tell this company your birthday? Or do you want to confirm that you are 18 years old or above? To answer these questions, all you need to do is press your thumb on the fingerprint scanner on your phone, and it will verify and approve the request.
Lots of companies are now using technology like blockchain to create digital identities that you won’t need someone else’s permission to control. But they’re not really user-friendly, and you have to know a lot about computers and set up a special wallet before you can start using them. That makes it harder for people to use these kinds of systems.
So, we’re working hard to make things easier for everyone by getting rid of those difficult steps, like having to remember a complicated recovery key, or needing a password. Instead, all you’ll have to do is give your name and email address, and then use your own biometrics (things like fingerprints) for identification.
When you’re setting up your Vault, it will ask you to save and note down a recovery key. The first time you use your digital identity, you’ll have to prove who you are by scanning documents. We do this so it’s easier for users to access the Sharering ecosystem without having to go through this verification process over and over again.
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