Is your identity ever safe online? Here’s how blockchain put an end to identity theft | Digital Asia
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You have all the reasons to feel scared when the biggest social networking site in the world with over 2 billion active monthly users says that its users' identities got compromised.
During the last week of September, on a Friday evening, when the world was getting ready for another weekend, Facebook published an update citing more than 50 million user accounts were hacked.
According to a blog post by Facebook, a minor vulnerability in its “View As” feature allowed hackers to steal access tokens and hack into users personal accounts. They got access of about 50 million accounts, which forced Facebook to reset them and another 40 million accounts as a precautionary step. Total 90 million users were logged out of their accounts automatically.
This was a mass hacking attempt on the world's largest social media platform; hence, the incident came to light shortly after it took place. But think about hundreds of those less popular online platforms where you have shared your personal information like name, age, location, mail ID, and bank details.
If Facebook can fall prey to hacking attempts, so can any other online platform in the world. This reaffirms one thing — identity theft is real, and unless necessary actions are taken, you can be its next victim.
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Regardless of how many precautionary measures you opt for, the risk of your personal information being compromised by online platforms can never be sidelined. The main reason behind it is the traditional way in which the data is saved on servers. If someone hacks into these servers, they can easily access the informed saved on them and use it for their benefits.
The only way to fix this issue that seems promising at this moment is blockchain. It's the future of the tech and can end identity theft once and for all.
How Blockchain Can End Identity Theft
Using blockchain to store online information and share it with third parties will make it tough for hackers to wreck any havoc without leaving behind any digital trail.
Fortune explains it in a simple way: Every block in the blockchain is built upon its predecessor. The cryptographic nature of all these blocks makes it challenging for fraudsters to alter the information that is stored in any of these blocks as it's connected with the information stored in another block, which has an entirely different virtual address.
This system bars data custodians from accessing information that you don't want to share, ultimately making it next to impossible for anyone to carry out an identity theft operation.
Blockchain technology uses DiDs (decentralised identifiers), which let the individuals take full control of their personal data. These DiDs are secret URLs stored on a blockchain ledger. Each of these DiDs is assigned to a different identity of the user, such as birthdate, name or bank account number. While making a payment online, users can temporarily grant these DiDs access to the personal information of their choice and revoke once the transaction is successful.
This arrangement might sound too good to be true, but many companies have already started working in this direction. A recent partnership between BMW group and Bloom is a great example to understand this changing scenario. Bloom is an emerging blockchain technology provider, constantly trying to introduce decentralised identity in everyday life. This partnership will allow BMW group to use blockchain technology for better customer experience and keep users free from unnecessary identity theft and privacy-related concerns.
The BMW group will take Bloom's help to verify customers' identity and attest their credit history without storing any customer data on their servers. Since Bloom uses a decentralised and unhackable storage system powered by blockchain, hackers will never be able to steal customer data.
Also read: Blockchain tech is swiftly gaining influence, innovating the world beyond tech
BMW isn't the only company thinking closely about making blockchain a part of its customer serving technology. Most other leading automotive players are working closely with blockchain experts to find a standard solution to fix data theft related issues as soon as possible.
This trend isn't just limited to the automotive sector alone. Many companies belonging to different sectors like insurance, financial operations, supply chain management, AI, intelligence, research, transportation, logistics, etc., have started testing blockchain powered solutions to secure their customer data.
As we inch towards an era that is going to be driven by artificial intelligence, internet of things, and machine learning, we should start thinking seriously about blockchain.
It's not a threat to our privacy, but an extension!
The sooner we understand this point, the easier it will become for us to keep our personal data safe and untouched. And when that happens, no news such as hacking into 50 million Facebook user accounts will make our blood run cold again and stop us from making weekend plans just like we always do.
What do you think about blockchain's inclusion into everyday tech? Share your opinions with us in the comments section below.
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