Blockchain identity startup Civic has joined a partnership previously formed between crypto cybersecurity company Rivetz and Telefónica’s cybersecurity unit ElevenPaths to deliver blockchain-powered identity solutions to mobile users.
Civic is an identity protection and management startup founded in 2015 by South African Internet entrepreneur Vinny Lingham. The company raised US$33 million in funding during its initial coin offering (ICO) in June of 2017 and partnered with WikiHow in August 2017 to provide the how-to website with encrypted login functionality.
Civic has developed a blockchain identity-verification technology that allows consumers to authorize the use of their identities in real time. The startup is now developing an ecosystem designed to facilitate on-demand, secure and low-cost access to identity-verification services via the blockchain.
Civic’s identity solutions will integrate with the cybersecurity architecture developed by Rivetz and Telefónica.
“Our partnership with Rivetz and ElevenPaths is a massive step in putting an uncomplicated digital identity solution in the hands of mobile users, who then call the shots,” said Lingham, CEO and co-founder of Civic. “The concept of identity is rapidly changing, and we look forward to a revolutionary partnership that makes sharing and verifying identity safe and seamless.”
Rivetz and Telefónica has developed a technology called Dual Roots of Trust cryptography, which distributes a user’s private key between two independent roots of trust or operating systems: the Trusted Execution Environment (TEE), an isolated, measured computer environment separate from the device’s operating system, and the carrier subscriber identity module (SIM). This structure provides an additional layer of security for private keys even if one of the systems is compromised.
The two companies unveiled the new technology at the Mobile World Congress Americas in September 2018.
With Civic, personal information can be stored locally on a mobile device and protected by biometrics and encryption. The integration will enable Civic to separate locally stored personal information from the user’s private key, adding an extra layer of protection.
“We are pleased to have Civic as part of the project to bring blockchain-powered identity verification services to the consumer,” said Steven Sprague, CEO of Rivetz. “The integration of built-in security and digital identity will offer a simple yet powerful new capability for users.”
Telefónica is one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world by market capitalization and number of subscribers, offering services and connectivity over fixed, mobile, and broadband networks. It is one of the world’s largest mobile carriers with 300 million subscribers and presence in 21 countries.
“Trusted computing technologies are not an end by themselves, but are an opportunity to improve mobile users’ security, providing a research and innovation framework in the context of cybersecurity”, said Pedro Pablo Pérez, Telefónica’s vice president of global security and CEO of ElevenPaths.