In today’s reality of COVID restrictions and lockdowns, who doesn’t love convenience? Since the onset of the pandemic, we have seen a rapid increase in the demand for digitization as individuals are limited in their ability to meet in–person for services. Even before the pandemic, we saw a desire among consumers to be able to conveniently access the services they need from wherever they are, rather than having to gather documents and visit a physical location.
In my recent podcast with Brad Carr of the Institute of International Finance, we discussed how digital identity and verified credentials can support a digital-first world, something that’s extremely relevant amid the current pandemic. Some of the key points we touched on during the podcast include:
- Our goal here is really to ensure users can efficiently prove their identity and access the services they need. Our Verified.Me service allows users to verify their identity by leveraging trusted connections to access the services they want. With this, we are seeing the notion of consumer consented privacy really take off, putting the user in control of their data. Verified.Me Canada’s leading digital identity network was developed in cooperation with seven of Canada’s major financial institutions – BMO, CIBC, Desjardins, National Bank of Canada, RBC, Scotiabank and TD – who made significant contributions to create easier ways for the clients to prove their identity.
- The value of verifiable credentials and the critical role they play to our digital identities, as static documents like driver’s licenses, passports and birth certificates are regularly used by both businesses and government to verify the identity of citizens. We’re currently working with the Department of Homeland Security in the US on a pilot project to implement a Green Card in a verifiable credential wallet.
- Since the onset of the pandemic and government restrictions, there has been an immense drive for remote personal verification to gain access to services. The need for a combination of open data, personal verification standards, verifiable credentials and user consent to share information is not just unique to Canada.
- A key prerequisite for advancing digital identity which is open digital trust frameworks and enabling users to have control over their data, as users can consent to where their data is shared and with whom. In Canada we have this notion of Triple Blind® capabilities, where networks don’t need to see where data is going. This was critical for us in the creation of Verified.Me, and especially relevant in use cases like healthcare and other similar services to consumers.
- The value of public–private partnerships will become increasingly significant as we move further into digital identity. This all ties to the idea of digital identity centered on empowering users and ensuring their privacy is protected through multiple levels of authentication, not just one entity. Without this combination of organizations working together, having verifiable credentials available to consumers wouldn’t be possible.
Listen to the entire podcast episode here and learn more about verifiable credentials:
About Greg Wolfond
Greg is the founder of SecureKey and brings more than 30 years of experience in fintech, security and mobile solutions to his role as Chief Executive Officer. Greg is a serial entrepreneurial whose earlier ventures include Footprint Software Inc., a financial software company he sold to IBM, and 724 Solutions Inc., a wireless infrastructure software provider he took public. He sits on several boards and has been recognized as one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40, Entrepreneur of the Year and one of the 100 Top Leaders in Identity. Greg holds a Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science from the University of Western Ontario and a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Life Sciences from the University of Toronto.