Spanish Companies Join Forces to Promote Digital Identity Using Blockchain Technology

A total of 10 leading Spanish companies are working together to develop a self-managed digital identity model with Blockchain technology, which will put Spain at the forefront in this type of development.

They will launch a solution that will provide the user with a unique and self-managed digital identity, in a secure and reliable environment, to facilitate the automatic completion of service access forms, among other uses.

The project, known as Dalion, has completed concept testing, as well as the second phase of the project, to deploy the solution in May 2021. This initiative is open to new partners to boost its use.

The project, which includes Banco Santander, Bankia, BME, CaixaBank, Inetum, Liberbank, Línea Directa Aseguradora, Mapfre, Naturgy and Repsol, as well as the Alastria consortium, will give users control over their personal data, making digital identity self-managed by each person safely and reliably a reality.

Self-managed identity allows people to have their personal data in a single digital identity, backed by relevant companies and stored on their own mobile device. Users can decide at any time with whom to share data in a fast, simple and secure process, in order to access any service without having to fill in tedious forms. For example, they can use their data validated by other organizations to rent a car, take out insurance, take out a loan, subscribe to an electricity service or any other service of their choice, in just a few clicks.

The creation of a self-managed digital identity gives the certainty that the information is reliable and has not been altered, thanks to Blockchain technology. The challenge is to ensure that it has legal effects equivalent to the most advanced data validation and authentication processes available today.

New economic models, more efficiency and more benefits

This development will give participating companies greater efficiency and improvements in various processes, such as user registration. Also, in order to transmit their capacity for innovation in people’s lives, the project will allow participating companies to design new economic models (individual and/or collective) to improve the user experience by drawing on the potential of self-managed digital identity. .

During the concept test, which has now been completed, the organizations found that the solution worked satisfactorily. The second phase of the project took place in November last year. It aims to complete the development in the next few months, in order to deploy this solution in a real production environment in May 2021. The companies participating in this proof of concept see great potential for all sectors.

At the moment, the demos run on one of the Blockchain infrastructures of the Alastria consortium (Ethereum-Quorum). This is a pioneering development in the use of open code libraries developed by the Alastria Identity Committee. In the coming months, work will also be carried out on other aspects of the technical implementation and use cases.

The project undertaken by these companies is a technological challenge that will put Spain at the forefront of Blockchain and identity management, a fundamental issue in digital environments for users and companies. The solution will also make it possible to fight more effectively against attempts at fraud and identity theft.

Alastria ID, the basis of the initiative

This project is based on the Alastria digital identity model (Alastria ID). The company is the first multi-sector consortium, made up of 600 partners including large companies, SMEs, public authorities and academic institutions, which aims to establish a public permission-based Blockchain infrastructure, designed in accordance with Spanish and European regulations.

Alastria ID was born thanks to the cooperation of more than 100 members of this consortium, not only on the technical and security level, but also on the legal level, because Alastria involves in the design of the leading lawyers in the field of of digital technology, to take into account all the major regulatory aspects, in particular those concerning the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Since the launch of the first phase of the Dalion project in October 2019, this model has been analyzed from different angles (business, security, technology, legal aspects, user experience, etc.) and the necessary software components have been developed to allow organizations to offer the use of self-managed identity in their business applications.

The 10 companies involved in the Dalion project have built a solution capable of guaranteeing the integrity and quality of data, avoiding any duplication and error, protecting the privacy of users because no personal data is stored in the network Blockchain or in a centralized format, and to prevent any traceability of the activity of the data subject on the network. The project includes observers from public authorities such as the town hall of Alcobendas and the University of Zaragoza, among others.

The Dalion project aims to improve traditional Single Sign-on (SSO) solutions such as Google or Facebook, based on the principle that the digital identity, composed of several attributes (identifiers), is certified and validated by the issuers of the identifiers . This means that a single solution can be used to access any type of service over the Internet securely, a process that previously required complex mechanisms specific to each company or a physical presence.

The Alastria ID identity model has been presented to the Spanish Association for Standardization (UNE) and is moving from a “de facto” standard to a formal standard and has also been submitted to other international standardization bodies such as the CEN/CENELEC, the European counterpart of the UNE. , and also served as an inspiration for the European Commission’s self-sovereign identity initiative, ESSIF.

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