Thursday, December 13, 2012

Concerns with the Platform

In this blog, I have been predicting the emergence of the future Platform and advocating its benefits. However, to stay balanced, I have to list some of the major concerns liked to the platform.

1. Privacy - the power controlling the Platform will have ultimate access to user information. As the Platform is essentially the Second Brain on the Internet, having access to the Platform gives an unprecedented insight into activities and thoughts of a person.

2. Security - unauthorized access to the Platform by hackers may have a devastating effect on a person and result in financial, reputation damage and even physical danger in case of illegal access by criminals.

3. Monopoly - the increasing returns to scale pattern observed across most historic internet platforms may likely result in emergence of a single Platform controlled by a for-profit corporation. This may result in consumer lock-up and disrupt the competition and innovation of service providers.

4. Governance - it is unclear which mechanisms and safeguards will be put in place to make sure that the stakeholders, including users and service providers, participate in the decision-making on major Platform policies. This is somewhat similar to current Governance challenges that Facebook faces, but on a much bigger scale.

Friday, November 16, 2012

The GINI-SA Project of the EU

The GINI-SA Project of the EU

GINI-SA is a Support Action for the EC which aims to analyse how a Personalized Identity Management (PIM) ecosystem in which individuals can manage their own digital identities and control the exchange of their identity information. 

Under the GINI vision, individuals would manage their identities by means of an Individual Digital Identity (‘INDI’). An INDI can be described as a self-generated and self-managed digital identity, which is verifiable against one or more authoritative data sources. 

Once created, users would have the ability to link their INDI with authoritative identity data maintained by both public- and private-sector entities. This data (or links thereto) could then be presented by the user towards relying parties. The user might wish to do this in order to meet transactional requirements (e.g., access control conditions set by a relying party) or underpin her trustworthiness towards others in various real life situations (e.g., verifying her education or presenting her skills when applying for a job).

The main objectives of GINI include:

1. Decoupling the activation of digital identities from the use of any particular identifier, and to support the use of multiple identities and/or identifiers;

2. Allowing users to exercise full control as to who is able to verify her identity and through which processes;

3. Enabling user control every phase of their digital identities’ life cycle (creation, change, management, revocation, etc.);

4. Identifying the ways and means through which a separation of identifiers and other identity attributes can be implemented in a user-friendly manner; 

5. Outlining the main properties of a digital identity ecosystem that is efficient and yet capable of enabling maximum control of users over their digital identities;

6. Determining the prerequisites for operators so that a viable business model can be established.

GINI further examines the technological, legal, regulatory and privacy-related dimensions of the gap between the current state of the art and the vision for a functional INDI ecosystem beyond 2020. Detailed examinations of these gaps have been carried out in the individual work packages of the project. The following sections briefly introduce the major gaps identified thus far.

The aim of this presentation would therefore be to engage stakeholder representatives from the policy and industry domain and exchange views that will be taken into account for the formulation of the White Paper and Roadmap GINI will publish within 2012.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

I just read a Booz study "The rise of generation C" -  I believe they largely share the vision of the Platform, though the transition to it is not discussed. As I understand, the authors expect the Platform to emerge by 2020.