Reason why ICT (Information Communication Technology) companies, financial circle, and major companies are interested in DID (Decentralized Identity) is because potential expandability of DID ecosystem. Because DID can be applied to any area that requires an authorization, companies are quick to grab the upper hand of markets through DID as every area such as technology, finance, and distribution is being converged rapidly.
Alliances that are targeting DID market are engaging in competitions against others through their distinguished strengths. While three major South Korean mobile network providers such as SK Telecom have Smartphone authentication as their key authentication method, ICONLOOP’s My-ID’s strength is non-face-to-face verification of one’s name for financial circle. Strength of DID Alliance, which has the founder of FIDO Alliance as its key participant, is stability through biometrics authentication.
◊Financial circle keeps a close watch on decentralized identity
Members of each alliance that stand out the most are financial companies such as banks, credit card companies, and stock firms. Not only is it possible to include identification information such as social security card, driver’s license, and passport, but it is also possible to include various personal information such as account number and ID and password from an online business transaction company.
In order for a person to purchase a product from an online shopping mall, not only he or she needs to have an account under his or her name but he or she also needs to go through a separate payment process while paying for a product. It is a must for a person to become a member of an online shopping mall to begin purchasing a product.
However, DID can eliminate all of these unnecessary processes as it includes authentication information, account information, and payment information. This is the reason why each alliance is partnering up with banks before securing other members because alliances want to link their DID systems with identification information and account information first.
Actually, SKT Consortium and DID Alliance first focused on securing participation from banks such as Woori Bank and Hana Bank and Shinhan Bank respectively. Attracting credit card companies as members has the same purpose as attracting banks as members.
“Although DID system can be used for various purposes, many companies are ultimately interested in making profits through DID.” said a representative for the industry. “If there are not business transactions through DID system, there will be less companies that are interested in DID.”

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◊Each alliance using its own distinctive strength
Each alliance is establishing their own ground by emphasizing its own distinctive trait.
Biggest strength of SKT Consortium is Smartphone-based authentication. Many people are already using such feature without an official certificate for various tasks.
SK Telecom is going to focus on blockchain-based mobile access control. LG Uplus is planning on establishing blockchain-based cellphone loss and destruction policy service between cellphone manufacturers, indemnity insurance companies, and mobile network providers and collaborating with SoftBank regarding blockchain. KT is planning to use mobile electronic verification from platform services such as BaaS (Blockchain as a Service) and local currency and blockchain technologies such as ‘5G GiGA Stealth’. SKT Consortium can also expand their business outside of telecommunication field towards unlisted stock transaction and others.
ICONLOOP’s My-ID service starts from financial services. For example, a financial consumer can be issued my-ID from a bank and he or she can complete a verification procedure with single my-ID authentication whenever he or she is opening a CMA account at a stock firm. my-ID service can also be used for various non-face-to-face tasks and it can also be used as an identification method for innovative mobile financial services of various FinTech companies. ICONLOOP is also planning to expand the application of my-ID service to other areas such as distribution.
Strengths of OmniOne, which is a platform of DID Alliance’s participating company called Raonsecure, are convenience and various usability through biometrics authentication. OmniOne takes care of an authentication process through biometrics such as fingerprint and face. It acts as a DID-based authentication platform for civil complaint portal service instead of electronic signature or non-repudiation.
◊Alliances working on international standardization and legislation of DID
Reason why each alliance is establishing its own ground through its own distinctive strength is because it wants to prepare for changes in global ecosystem. While alliances need to keep pace with global technical standards to apply their DID systems, they also need support from South Korean Government.
DID Alliance was launched for global authentication standardization needed to establish blockchain-based DID infrastructures and to disseminate and spread standardized DID. It is going to encourage other companies to be its partners so that individual identification information can be easily exchanged through global channels and work on standardizing DID-related technologies.
First, it is going to provide a safe environment by vitalizing verification service centered on DID system users in South Korea, improving level of convenience, and strengthening security. Its plan is to have South Korea lead the DID industry. It is also planning to standardize DID-related technologies and push for legislation of DID-based verification method.
When it works on promoting international collaboration, it is planning on extensive collaborations such as establishing DID infrastructures in developing countries. It is going to establish technical standards by forming a working group in the second quarter of next year and suggest laws, systems, and business models.
my-ID Alliance, which is expected to be launched next month, is also planning to share overall trends of DID industry with its members and relevant departments and focus on discussing technical standards at the same time.
“DID Alliance is a global group and our plan is to have South Korea lead new technologies.” said Chairman Kim Young-lin of DID Alliance Korea. “DID Alliance will be the cornerstone to promote ourselves as a bigger group that also deals with FIDO and blockchain technologies.”
Staff Reporter Ryu, Geunil | & Staff Reporter Jung, Youngil |