Insights & Analyses

Canada’s SecureKey wins $800K US grant, plans blockchain digital identity network

February 15, 2017

Canadian identity and authentication provider SecureKey Technologies this week secured a grant valued at up to $800,000, which it plans to utilize to create a blockchain-powered “Cloud Identity Ecosystem.”

SecureKey’s ecosystem will give consumers the tools needed to securely manage digital identities and networks. The system will be built within a framework that “protects and promotes Canadian values and perspectives.”

Those rules will be based on a series of Digital Identity Ecosystem Principles set forth by the Digital ID and Authentication Council of Canada. The DIACC is a nonprofit organization that is working toward building a digital ID and authentication framework in Canada, and it has partnered with SecureKey for the Cloud Identity Ecosystem.

The grant was funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology Directorate.

“Through ground breaking partnerships, DIACC continues to help drive innovation in Canada and we are thrilled to have been awarded this research grant in collaboration with SecureKey,” said Joni Brennan, president of the DIACC. “If Canada is to seize the opportunity of the digital economy, we must invest together in Digital ID and Authentication – these are the rails upon which the digital economy runs. Development of a secure and privacy enhancing Cloud Identity Ecosystem is critical to enabling Canadian citizens, businesses and governments to capture the full potential of the global digital economy.”

Canada’s Digital Identity Ecosystem Principles call for the nation to build a robust, secure and scalable ecosystem that will implement, protect, and enhance privacy by design. It also calls for transparency in governance and operation, citizen choice and control, and the ability to be independently assessed or audited.

By using securely encrypted blockchain, SecureKey says its Cloud Identity Ecosystem will improve security and privacy controls while maintaining integrity and confidentiality of data.

“SecureKey is fully committed to developing a national digital identity ecosystem that puts consumers first and increases both their digital security and privacy,” SecureKey Chief Identity Officer Andre Boysen said. “This funding will be essential in making that commitment a reality, ensuring that consumers have access to secure digital protection. The fast-paced development of the digital economy demands that federated identity ecosystems be developed to support trusted transactions online by eliminating security and privacy gaps.”