Increasing Digital Connectivity to the Poor
In 2006, WISeKey committed to provide a platform to enable individuals to conduct payments and transactions over mobile phone devices in order to support the development of communities through communication.
WISeKey, in cooperation with the International Organization for Secure Transactions Foundation (OISTE.org), will be providing a Digital Identification Infrastructure-NETeID-designed to support a network of 20,000 Identification Authorities worldwide with the objective to issue a billion digital identities. Each of these 20,000 Identification Authorities operating from 189 countries will be authorized to issue Digital Identities locally.
I. During the 2006 World Summit on the Information Society, WISeKey, with partner Microsoft, worked to expand the use of Digital Identification with the aim of increasing digital connectivity and secure transaction services. The partners aim to include 1 billion users by 2015.
II. In response to the loss of funds from donors to intended recipients due to intermediaries and the lack of a secured electronic transaction system, the creation of a Digital Committed Aid Check (DCAC) allows the funds provider to have its donation go toward a pre-stated and specific purpose. If the conditions of the donation are not fulfilled (project start, specific recipient, etc.) the fund provider has the ability to cancel the check at any of its different states: requested, issued, assigned and cashed. Otherwise, the check can be cashed when the stated conditions have been met. This scenario is also appropriate when a direct trust is established, as in the case of remittance where few or zero intermediaries exist.
It should be noted that the objective is not to radically change the global aid framework, as the current structure of a ‘two way street’ between the fund consolidators on one side and the funds distributors on the other, is still useful and relevant. The local funds collectors, NGOs and governments do play an important role, notably for the pre-approval, post-control, consolidation and assignment phases.
III. The NETeID system was designed as a Social Network tool that allows for citizen worldwide to connect with one another, and to different sources of interventions. With few exceptions, the scope of the interventions is defined at three levels: local, national and global. At the local level (the village, district, or in some cases the urban level) the NETeID system will provide citizens holding a digital identification with information about, for instance, basic social services, such as financial aid, health and education. At the national level the Digital Identification will bring the citizens more complex Web Services that carry information about jobs, investment opportunities or goods and services. Finally, at the broadest level, the NETeID System will inter connect to the global information infrastructure provided by agencies providing poverty alleviation services and will federate participating agencies into a global Federated System using Single Sign On technologies to allow citizens to access all these services from a single entry point via a Generic Poverty Alleviation Portal. Each higher level usually includes elements of the preceding levels.
The NETeID is designed in a way that handles all types of interventions simultaneously via a dashboard, with those that directly benefit the poor coming in first. This usually happens at the local level and the impact is always more visible. The NETeID system also considers a broader definition of poverty, where poverty is also defined as being deprived of the information and basic services needed to participate in the ‘global’ society. WISekey and OISTE are working with International Organizations, such as the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and NGOs that have been implementing these services. The NETeID system also processes indirect intervention where the benefits of Digital Identification and remittances are felt upstream from the poor, but may trickle down through the social-economic fabric. The third type of intervention is using Digital Identities and related Citizen Portals in support of poverty reduction mechanisms and related development projects. Crosscutting areas in poverty management can be greatly aided by introducing the type of technology available at the NETeID system.
The success of the project will be measured by the number of eID’s issued by the pre-determined identification authorities, and the amount of funds transmitted using this new technological platform.
This commitment includes the development and distribution of a digital identity which is downloaded through the WISeID app. This app is also part of another commitment WISekey has with the CGI on Micro Remittances. Since 2006, more than 2.5 billion Server Digital Identities have been downloaded by users in 195 countries using the OISTE/WISekey Server ID Key. These users are now able to activate their WISeID App which is then ubiquitous and universal once they receive the ‘public key’ from financial and telecom web certification authorities.
WISeID helps individuals protect their personal identifiable information (PII), data which contains the unique identity, contact, and location details that can be traced back to a single person. The personal data in WISeID is stored securely. The WISeID system was designed as a set of online tools intended to empower people with secure and private digital identification, trusted so as to enable transaction application.
With the current progress this commitment is nearly completed and will be now expanded to the rest of the Internet community with the objective to reach out 6 billion people. This will be done in cooperation with other initiatives working on this direction such as Internet.org, ICANN, and the United Nations.
In 2013, WISeKey announced a Special Edition of this service, with integrated ID federation, allowing individuals to automatically generate their WISeID (or secure digital identity) from a social network profile. Participation on the Internet requires maintenance of dozens of different username and password combinations, which are difficult to remember and present significant security flaws. The new WISeID Special Edition manages account credentials and reinforces personal ownership of profile details.
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