Decentralized identity foundation: our partnership

The internet revolution has brought us innumerable benefits. Bringing additional transparency to government, supporting livelihoods of many and bringing ubiquitous free services. However, one of the great tragedies of the internet revolution is the loss of our ability to make decisions free of external gazes.

This problem can largely be attributed to centralisation. Where economics of internet made centralised gatekeepers backed by network effects very powerful. However, the large institutions failed to take on its responsibility of its privileged position. In our current world data abuse is rampant.

We do need to recognise, nonetheless, the difficult position a lot of internet companies and government agencies are in. We want free internet services and the convenience of not having airport level security check everywhere we go.

Thankfully we live in a unique transitional period where first time in history. Blockchain technology makes building decentralised services viable. Not only do we have the ability to securely store data without a centralised entity, the creation of cryptocurrency enabled us to create the necessary financial incentive help the network thrive.

The Decentralised Identity foundation was started to address this precise problem. Although the membership comprises of many different competing firms, we are united by the foundational “belief that identity is composed of a deeply personal collection of data that defines us, and your identity should answer to no one but you.”

To achieve this we must:

1. Enable registration of self-sovereign identifiers that no provider owns or controls.

2. Deliver on the ability to lookup and discover identifiers and data across decentralized systems.

3. Provide a mechanism for users to securely store sensitive identity data, and enable them to precisely control what is shared with others.

R_Block was conceived in 2015, having faced some of these problems firsthand. Luke, one of the founders had become disenchanted with the state of recruitment. Increasing competition for attention and an unmatched supply of talent meant diminishing results for recruiters. This drew most to data abuse tactics of spam and falsely phishing for leads — ruining tools like referencing. With frustration at an all time high, a shift towards platforms empowering workers had begun. Luke imagined a referencing tool to protect workers data and allow them to own it. An ecosystem in which workers could interact with companies and recruiters on a level playing field. R_Block was born.

By being part of the Decentralised Identity Foundation we hope to make privacy an industry standard. More specifically we believe that we could make a significant contribution to the foundation by being the first company to provide high level identity checks. Gathering richer data such as the peer reviewed performance metric or individual’s credibility within the industry.

COO of Baidu Qi Li argues that a primary means of production in the 21st century will not be land, or physical commodities but data. We can imagine a world where machine learning powered bots detect early signs of cancer by analysing our electronic health data. Or nations managing energy usage far more efficiently by inferring consumption patterns, or even easily placing us on the perfect job. To benefit from these data driven technologies without the massive privacy violations we need to deliver on the common vision of the Decentralised Identity Foundation.

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