After the massive Equifax data breach (read more here) this summer affecting 143 million Americans governments are coming face to face with the question of how to keep citizens’ data safe from hackers. The data breach highlighted the vulnerability of large databases containing sensitive information being maintained by third parties; the data that landed in the hands of cybercriminals was sufficient to steal identities completely and left those affected drawing a blank on what to do next.
System to give citizens control over their own data
Canada has taken the problem to bat and announced this week plans to launch an identity system based on Blockchain technology. In this new system, users will be able to store their drivers license, ID cards, and bank information in apps on their smartphones. The system will be launch in the first half of 2018 giving citizens a new level of control of their private data /1/.
Perhaps the biggest issue of third party data storage systems is their reliance on centralised databases. When a hacker gains access to such a database, they gain enough information to piece together to identities of all of those in the system with one hit. Canadians using the Blockchain-based identity system will avoid contributing to the growth of these large, centralised, and hackable databases /2/. Additionally, users are able to administer their own private data without having to go through an official registry.
Blockchain platform eliminates third parties
The apps supported by the Blockchain platform function quite simply. If, for example, a lender (or some other party) wants to verify a persons identity when they apply for a loan, they can send a request to the person directly asking for access to their information; the user can approve or deny access themselves /3/.
At faizod, we are excited about this development as a testament to the capacity of Blockchain for putting control over data back in the hands to those it belongs to. To learn how Blockchain can be implemented to increase transparency, traceability, and control over data for your company, reach out to our experts here.