The US House of Representatives explores digital identity schemes and hears testimony in favor of public-private collaboration on biometric ID authentication standards championed by the World Economic Forum and the FIDO Alliance.
“The public and private sectors should collaborate to deliver solutions that promote confidence, privacy, choice, and innovation” — “Improving Digital Identity Act of 2021”
In January, 2020, the WEF partnered with the FIDO Alliance on a 26-page report called “Passwordless Authentication,” in which the two entities presented how digital identity could be authenticated using FIDO’s biometric principles.
FIDO, which stands for Fast IDentity Online, developed an authentication standard that looks to eliminate the need for passwords and replace them with a user’s biometric identifiers through voice and facial recognition, iris scans, and fingerprint swipes.
Testifying on digital identity before Congress on Friday was one of the joint WEF-FIDO report contributors, Jeremy Grant, who is also the managing director at Venable — a WEF partner on the Platform for Good Digital Identity.
With the credentials of WEF contributor, FIDO Alliance advisor, Venable managing director, and Better Identity Coalition (BIC) coordinator, Grant told the House Financial Services AI Task Force that the FIDO Alliance standard was the most significant development for authentication market in the past 20 years
Grant expects FIDO will “play a big role in the Federal government’s efforts to comply with the Biden Administration’s recent Executive Order mandate for universal MFA [multifactor authentication] across all government systems.”
“Industry has said they cannot solve this alone […] Government will need to step up and play a bigger role to help address critical vulnerabilities in our digital identity fabric” — Jeremy Grant
There is much overlap between the World Economic Forum, the FIDO Alliance, and the Better Identity Coalition on the subject of digital identity, biometric authentication, and public-private collaborations.
And people like Grant and his associate Parker Crockford have participated in activities relating to all three organizations.