San Francisco based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase just announced its acquisition of Distributed Systems. The Distributed Systems team actually considered selling to Facebook before ultimately choosing Coinbase.
Now that Coinbase has acquired Distributed Systems, it can now set up these identity solutions through a separate project team now joined by a five-person Distributed Systems team. Three of the five will be responsible for decentralized mobile browsing while its CEO Nikhil Srinivansan and its co-founder Alex Kern will be creating a new decentralized identity team to integrate Coinbase with a ‘Log-in with Coinbase” feature. This employs a similar technology to Facebook’s where ‘know your customer’ features are being used as part of an anti-money laundering effort.
This new tool Coinbase aims to create may prove to be quite attractive for developers looking to improve conversions on their signup flow. The new log-in with Coinbase feature will be an effective feature helping users go through the whole signing up processes skipping the need for complicated keys, wallet integration, etc.
The goal is to aid people in maintaining control over digital identities and to keep them secure so all personal information remains intact in a convenient fashion.
Furthermore, Coinbase’s identity project manager Byrne wrote on the safety this move could extend to the American public:
“Every time you want to prove who you are with your SSN, you need to give away a copy of it. That copy has exactly the same power as the original, so when there’s a data breach with copies of your data it puts your identity at risk. A decentralized identity will let you prove that you own an identity, or that you have a relationship with the Social Security Administration, without making a copy of that identity.”
Additionally, the new digital identity technology can offer great convenience in day to day needs. Byrne added to this by saying:
“If you stretch your imagination a little further, you can imagine this applying to your photos, social media posts and maybe one day your passport too.”
Although Coinbase certainly showed interest in digital identity tools, it will not be implementing these in a hurry. Byrne stated that the company will be taking precautions in applying the tools.
Lastly, he shares his view on blockchain technology being the way to engage in “experiences that require trust”. Since cryptocurrency is on its way to the mainstream, integrating anonymity and privacy features will become real needs inevitably.