Our idea is simple: that users should be at the center of their identity management process, a concept known as Self-Sovereign IDentity (SSID). We can escape from the legacy systems of paper-based documents and move into a digital identity with privacy, security, transparency and individual rights with SelfKey, a SSID implementation built using blockchain technology, with the corresponding keys held in a digital identity wallet.
SelfKey is an identity system built on an open platform consisting of several key components including: SelfKey Foundation, a non-profit foundation whose charter and governance enshrines the principles of self-sovereign identity, a technology stack with a free and open source identity wallet for the identity owner, a marketplace with real products and services available at launch, a JSON-LD (machine readable) protocol, connection to 3rd party identity micro services which comply with KYC laws and regulations, and a native token called “KEY” which enables the SelfKey ecosystem to exchange value and information in an efficient, fully-digital, self-sovereign manner.
SelfKey technology has been in development for four years. At the core is a technology stack with a free and open source identity wallet including a protocol and API built with modular microservices for KYC. The Technology and the team have graduated from several accelerators as KYC-Chain, has gone through a POC with Standard Chartered Bank and is powering KYC of some of the most promising Token Sales and Fintech startups. See the SelfKey Deck for more information.
SelfKey is a tried and true technology, it is already being used powering token sales and fintech startups such as Polymath, Airswap, Gatcoin, Aditus and others.
Opportunities:The team has proved their capabilities with KYC Chain which is already working with different blue-chip organizations. It is very difficult for startups to be commissioned by established financial institutions and government agencies, so this speaks to the team’s ability.The client base of KYC Chain is highly complementary to SelfKey. The partnerships that are in place with various ICO projects such as Kyber, AirSwap, Polymath and others should help drive the adoption of SelfKey quickly because the target users are already familiar with cryptocurrency.After the Equifax hack which allowed attackers to obtain crucial personal identity information for 143 million people, the public realizes the importance of a decentralized identity system.Going forward, SelfKey will be mentioned every time their technology is used in a token sale. In cryptocurrency, news flow is one of the main factors that drives valuation because the field is so speculative.
Concerns:The completed product won’t be finished until 2019 and beyond according to the roadmap, which is a fairly long time.There are other blockchain projects in the identity authentication space, including Civic and Sovrin, so SelfKey may not be the winner in the space. However, we believe SelfKey has a broader scope and is further along in development/adoption.
ConclusionOverall, we like both the short- and long-term potential for this ICO. Our thoughts of the tokens for short term and long term are as follows:For short-term holdingGood. Very few ICO projects have the level of real world partnership and adoption that SelfKey is expected to have. There were higher bonus tiers before the public presale, but there is an anti-dumping policy in place (i.e. in order to qualify for the highest bonus tier, half of the tokens are locked up for 6 months). Therefore, we believe there should be enough unmet demand for this project to have good short-term potential assuming the current market environment holds.For long-term holdingGood. KYC Chain has partnerships with numerous well-known organizations in the crypto space that are complementary to SelfKey’s business. We believe SelfKey can become the market leader in KYC for token sales and get the ball rolling in adoption, which is one of the most important factors in determining whether the project will be successful.
Storage and protection of personal data, simplification of their use scenarios, and ability to monetize user data are currently subjects of much hype. Lately we see more and more teams experimenting in this field and finding new approaches and solutions. SelfKey too is among such projects, although we can’t exactly call it a “miracle cure”.Despite suggested countermeasures, partial risks associated with theft of personal information remain. Leaks can occur both on the user side, and on the side of service providers. Mass proliferation of the product will also be stalled by a variety of factors: obligatory integration, cross-border interaction, nuances of various jurisdictions, relative novelty of transactions between legal and human entities using tokens.SelfKey is not something that would be realized immediately, but holds a lot of potential. There is a clear trend towards decentralization of personal data storage and management. More and more analysts and specialists come to the conclusion that user data is a unique commodity, one that organisations should be charged for. SelfKey is one of the first examples of this concept realized.
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