Consumer Blockchain ID in Canada Increases Privacy, Security, and Trust

Consumer Blockchain ID in Canada Increases Privacy, Security, and Trust

Blockchain ID Network Available for Canadian Consumers.

IBM and SecureKey Technologies announced a joint effort to create a new digital blockchain id and attribute sharing network based on IBM’s Blockchain solution under development on the open source Hyperledger Fabric v1.0, which part of the Linux Foundation.

The consumer blockchain ID solution plans to make it easier for members to verify they are who they say they are, in a privacy-enhanced, security-rich and efficient way. The service is currently in the testing phase in Canada and planning to launched late 2017 with a focus on allowing consumers to instantly verify their identity for opening new bank accounts, driver’s licenses, utilities, and other services where trusted identities are critical.

Ecosystems requiring highly secure, global and enterprise-ready identity services requires both advanced federated identity technology and blockchain technology specifically designed for regulated industries. The Hyperledger Fabric is a permissioned blockchain which is an essential element to supporting regulatory compliant applications for data protection and confidentiality.

Blockchain ID brings significant advantages to self-managed privacy, data management, and control. The new consumer ID network will allow network members (consumers) to manage what, when, and how personally identifiable information is shared with organizations of their choice so the participating organizations can securely validate member’s identity and arrange new services. For example, if a consumer has proven their identity with a credit agency or bank, they can grant permission to share certain data with a mobile operator or utility company to create a new account. Since the bank or agency has already extensively verified the consumer’s identity, the new service provider can choose to trust the information is verified for that individual to gain approval to new services quickly.

In October 2016, major Canadian banks (BMO, CIBC, Desjardins, RBC, Scotiabank and TD)  joined the effort and made an initial collective investment of $27M in SecureKey. Other organizations to have joined and invested include The Digital ID and Authentication Council of Canada (DIACC) and the Command Control and Interoperability Center for Advanced Data Analytics (CCICADA), a research center of excellence funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology Directorate.

Partner quotes:

Marie Wieck, general manager, IBM Blockchain

“What IBM is building with SecureKey and members of the digital identity ecosystem in Canada, including major banks, telecom companies and government agencies, will help tackle the toughest challenges surrounding identity,” said Marie Wieck, general manager, IBM Blockchain. “This method is an entirely different approach to identity verification, and together with SecureKey, we have a head start on putting it on the blockchain. This is a prime example of the type of innovation permissioned blockchain networks can accelerate.”

Greg Wolfond, Founder and CEO, SecureKey Technologies

“Hyperledger Fabric is by far the most advanced permissioned-blockchain technology available today, in my opinion, both in protecting user data and allowing us to work within the context of industry and country privacy laws,” said Greg Wolfond, Founder and CEO, SecureKey Technologies. “Among the many contributors to Hyperledger Fabric including SecureKey, IBM is a standout innovator that has proven that they can rapidly bring blockchain solutions to production. We are very excited to enter into this formal agreement that will benefit consumers around the world.”

Todd Roberts, Senior Vice President, Innovation, CIBC

“Implementing forward thinking innovation is key to ensuring our clients have the best possible experience in today’s digital environment,” said Todd Roberts, Senior Vice President, Innovation, CIBC. “We are pleased to continue working with SecureKey to implement leading edge technology that protects our clients’ security and privacy in the digital ecosystem.”

Patrice Dagenais, Vice president, Payment and Business Partnerships for Desjardins Group.

“We believe that combining SecureKey’s expertise and innovation in identity and the technological knowledge and leadership of Hyperledger Fabric and IBM Blockchain’s High Security Business Network will be foundational in delivering a great identity solution for consumers in Canada and also help pave the way at the international level,” said Patrice Dagenais, Vice president, Payment and Business Partnerships for Desjardins Group.

Eddy Ortiz, VP, Solution Acceleration and Innovation, RBC

“Collaborating with partners like SecureKey and IBM in the development and implementation of solutions that make our clients’ interactions secure and seamless is essential to meeting evolving expectations in a digital world,” said Eddy Ortiz, VP, Solution Acceleration and Innovation, RBC. “Canada has an important opportunity to innovate with emerging technologies like blockchain to advance digital identity in Canada.”

Mike Henry, Executive Vice President, Retail Payments, Deposits and Unsecured Lending, Scotiabank.

“Scotiabank is embracing digital technologies like blockchain to offer a superior customer experience and to make it easier for customers to bank with us whenever they want and wherever they are,” said Mike Henry, Executive Vice President, Retail Payments, Deposits and Unsecured Lending, Scotiabank. “We are pleased to work with SecureKey and other innovative partners to provide Canadian consumers with an easy and secure privacy-enhanced digital ID process.”

Rizwan Khalfan, Chief Digital Officer, TD

“Helping Canadians control the security of their personal data to reduce the risk of fraud online, in person, or over the phone is innovating with purpose,” said Rizwan Khalfan, Chief Digital Officer, TD. “We are thrilled to work with SecureKey and its partners in the creation of an innovative identity ecosystem designed to allow our customers to digitally and securely validate their identity, when and how they want to.”