Systems that use Ethereum wallets for identification aren’t unknown and are used on NFT platforms often.
The Ethereum Foundation and Ethereum Name Service are looking to offer users an alternative to Google, Apple and Facebook as a common sign-in method across the web.
Two of the most important bodies backing the development of the Ethereum ecosystem have shortlisted Spruce Software to build the new ‘decentralised’ system.
Trusting tech giants Google and Facebook with personal information has become risky business with cases of user data being left vulnerable increasing with time — the most glaring example being the Cambridge Analytica scandal. However, doing without them is not an option for most people in their day-to-day lives.
As an alternative, the Ethereum Foundation (EF) and the Ethereum Name Service (ENS) — two of the most important bodies fueling the development of the Ethereum blockchain — are looking to develop a ‘decentralised’ solution. Rather than using Google, Facebook or Apple accounts to sign into other services, they want to offer a ‘sign in with Ethereum’ alternative.
The Ethereum ecosystem already has tens of millions of monthly active wallet users signing with their cryptographic keys for financial transactions, community governance, and more.
Simply put, giving information to tech giants and then using those same accounts for other apps is ‘centralised’. While it allows users to avoid passwords and provides a level of security, it also hands over data on their Internet activity to these firms. Ethereum, on the other hand, does not. It isn’t controlled by a for-profit organization, meaning there’s no one to profit from your data, at least on paper.
The foundation had put forth a request for proposals for creating a ‘sign-in with Ethereum’ system recently and a proposal from identity software firm Spruce has come out as the winning idea.
The security of these wallets has been proven across billions of dollars of digital assets at stake — not theoretical security, but real tests in production. These secure wallets can also be used to sign in to Web2 services.
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