Digital IDs backed by the blockchain will be offered to Koreans by 2024
October 18, 2022 4:48 AM
A blockchain-based ID would be fully decentralized under the proposed system, shielding its users from any oversight by the government.
As the country of South Korea continues to embrace blockchain technology, it is possible that by 2024 its citizens will be able to use digital IDs based on the technology rather than physical cards.
In the future, digital IDs will be embedded as an app within mobile devices, functioning similarly to physical resident registration cards, as reported by Bloomberg on October 17.
Launch of the digital IDs is planned for 2024, with widespread adoption occurring two years later, affecting approximately 45 million people.
The director-general of Korea's Digital Government Bureau, Suh Bo Ram, has said that the technology can aid businesses that have not yet made the transition to the digital sphere, while an economist at Korea's Science and Technology Policy Institute, Hwang Seogwon, has suggested that digital IDs could be used in finance, healthcare, taxes, and transportation.
According to Suh, the plan also calls for the government to adopt a decentralized identity system, which would prevent the government from having access to data stored on phones, such as the digital ID being used, how it is being used, and where it is being used.
The tech-savvy nation is no stranger to such innovations; in fact, the Portulans Institute, an American think tank, ranks them as the world's most advanced in their use of technology across all facets of life, business, and government.
As such, it wouldn't be the first digital ID solution in the country to use the blockchain.
Over a million South Koreans by August 2020 were using a driver's license powered by the blockchain and accessible through the Korea PASS mobile app.
In September of 2020, a South Korean government agency called the Korea Internet & Security Agency (KISA) began pilot testing on a system with similar functionality.
It is widely believed that other countries will soon follow South Korea's lead in blockchain and the Metaverse.
ReportLinker, a market research firm, predicted in June 2021 that the blockchain identity market would expand by $3.58 billion by 2025, representing a CAGR of 71%.
Brenda Gentry, CEO of Bundlesbets.com and a blockchain advisor, recently told Cointelegraph that official approval from either government or business entities is necessary for the ID management system to function.
"It will be impossible to use blockchain IDs to access the vast majority of public services if their validity is not recognized by the issuing authorities. To me, this is the biggest barrier."