Microsoft Develops Identity Toolkit on Bitcoin Blockchain

Microsoft Develops Identity Toolkit on Bitcoin Blockchain


Microsoft has announced the launch of its decentralized identity toolkit implementation, built directly on the bitcoin blockchain – the first of its kind by a major tech company.


The open-source project, dubbed Ion, tackles how networks, and their proprietary mechanics, communicate with each other. Current identity services often require social verification via a third party (such as a Facebook account). Ion would replace this service, providing decentralized identification in order to prove that you own the ‘keys’ to this data.

Co-founder of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and cryptocurrency veteran Christopher Allen, believes that Microsoft’s product could have a profound effect on the entire tech industry.

‘A lot of enterprise infrastructures use Microsoft products,” Allen said. “So if they integrate this into any of their infrastructure products, they’ll have access to DID.’

Yorke Rhodes, program manager of Microsoft’s blockchain engineering team, confirmed that the tech giant has been developing their proprietary key signing and validation software on top of public networks like bitcoin and ethereum for over a year. Breakthroughs have meant that Ion is capable of handling a vastly greater throughput in comparison to the underlying blockchain.

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A Week of Adoption

That this and other adoption news stories are being released during Consensus is no coincidence. Gemini’s revelation of a potentially mammoth partnership with Flexa and a whole host of US retail giants (Whole Foods, Starbucks), as well as Bakkt rolling out testing of it’s BTC-settled futures in July of this year, suggests that enterprise buidling has been well under way over the last 12-18 months.

Microsoft’s flagpole in the land of decentralized enterprise product offerings – on bitcoin no less- should tell you all you need to know about the coming wave of global crypto adoption. Yes, many online news vendors have spoken, often prematurely, about ‘mainstream’ cryptocurrency adoption. But like with any major technology network effects, once the tipping point has been reached, we’ll look back and wonder how we ever coped without a truly interconnected digital world.