Using Blockchain to Support a New Approach to ID ManagementChris Boscolo of ZNO Labs Describes a 'Self-Sovereign Identity' Approach
Blockchain, the digital ledger used for cryptocurrency, can serve as an effective identity management platform, asserts Chris Boscolo, CEO of ZNO Labs, who describes an approach he calls "self-sovereign identity."
In an interview with Information Security Media Grup, Boscolo explains this approach, in which the user has control over the data that makes up their identity.
Under the current system of opening a bank account, he explains, "to prove who you are, you'll hand over quite a bit of information to the bank. ... The bank will turn around and do a search in centralized databases for this data about you to confirm that all this data matches what you handed them. With a self-sovereign identity, this problem is flipped around," he says, with individuals assembling cryptographically verified "claims" of various aspects of identity.
"All of those claims stay in the possession of the user. And because it uses cryptography, the end user is the one in control of the keys that make those cryptographic signatures possible."
Role of Blockchain
At the crux of this new model for ID management is blockchain technology, which can be leveraged to ensure the integrity of identity information.
"What makes blockchain such an amazing technology is that when things are put on the blockchain, it's very easy using cryptography to prove that the thing that got put on hasn't been changed," Boscolo says. "It also decentralizes the role that the identity platform plays in such a way that there is no company or organization that owns the platform."
In this interview (see audio link below photo), Boscolo discusses:
- The concept of "identity as a service";
- The role of the blockchain in a new approach to ID management called lifeID;
- How to make a transition from centralized ID management to self-sovereign identities.
Boscolo is founder and CEO of ZNO Labs, the official launch partner of the lifeID Network. He has experience in security startups as a founder and technical leader, including as chief software architect of WatchGuard Technologies, where he led the development of its internet firewall/VPN appliance.