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Michael Becker CEO of Identity Praxis, and MEF ID & Data Working Group Chair looks ahead to next week’s MEF CONNECTS ID & Data 2024 event which promises to provide a unique 360-degree view of the identity and data landscape through the eyes of government, business, academia, and the connected individual. Find out what will be on the agenda – you’re invited to the revolution!

Globally, the foundation of our commercial, civic, and social engagements is shifting under our feet. This is a revolution, not an evolution.

What’s happening? 

Fundamentally, what’s happening is the internet is getting a new layer—it is becoming identity-aware. As awareness of this change takes hold and grows, we will quickly realize that nearly every aspect of our lives—our personal, education, work, and civic online and internet-enhanced offline experiences—has subtly or quite dramatically changed. We  will experience growing pains. There will be challenges and opportunities, winners and losers. There will be opportunities for growth, and setbacks to overcome.

As with any change, especially one this pervasive, it is going to take time (shorter for some and longer for others) to become aware, understand, come to grips with, and respond appropriately to what is happening on all the many policy and regulation, commercial, technical, cultural, and political fronts that are influencing this change. Our collective and individual response to the change and the cacophony of smaller ones will be highly dependent on our context—i.e., are we talking about ourselves through the lens of the individual, citizen, student, employee, employer, industry contributor, policy and regulator, some of the above,  none–of–the above, or all–of–the–above.

As you start peeling the ID & Data onion, you’ll hear all kinds of important and nuanced language—decentralized identity, Web 3, Web 5, self-sovereign identity, digital identity wallets, personal information management systems (PIMS), the frictionless–privacy-enhanced experience…you’ll hear about the blockchain, KERI, CESR, mDLs, OpenI, OAuth, verified credentials, decentralized identifiers, digital certificates, digital credentials, LEIs/vLEIs, tokens, GDPR, CPPA, eIDAS 2.0, entity identity, verified delegated authority, discriminative and generative AI, ML, NL KYC, AML, OTP, MFA, 2FA, RCS, Stir/Shaken, flash calling, psasskey and passcode, liveness testing, biometrics, Open Gateway, APIs, and so much more.

You’ll hear questions about customer experience, use cases, changing businesses models, age verification, parental control and guardianship, digital inheritance, harms and privacy, regulations and compliance, market competitiveness, content authenticity and provenance, individual empowerment tech (thanks to @Jamie Smith from Mission for this term), privacy-preserving practices, jurisdictional differences, and a host of other inquires.

In addition, we will all need to contend with the fact that, for better or worse, governments are laying down digital public good infrastructure and are getting into the identity and data business. This list can feel endless, but in the end, what all these terms, questions, and observations roll up to are the same thing: how we live is about to change, and and ID & Data are the golden thread that traverses every aspect of our lives from conception, birth, adolescent, adulthood, death, and post-death.


This conversation brings us to what’s happening next week in London, MEF CONNECTS ID & Data 2024! Which will be held on May 21st at IET London (2 Savoy Pl, London WC2R 0BL). We also have a bonus day planned for Wednesday May 22nd! The MEF Connects ID & Data Empowerment Tech unconference.

Next week’s event will provide a unique 360-degree view of identity and data landscape through the eyes of government, business, academia, and the connected individual. We have over 45 global thought leaders—from Bhutan, Kenya, Croatia, Germany, The Netherlands, Ireland, the United States, and the United Kingdom—who will be touching on all the points above and more. Your opening keynotes will be Pallavi Sharma and Louis Gump. Pallavi is one of the founding members of the Bhutan National Digital Identity Program<sup>†</sup>. Pallavi will explain how a small country in Asia, who measures success by monitoring Grass National Happiness, became the first country in the world to empower its citizens with a self-sovereign identity suite of solutions of services. Louis Gump, a mobile industry maven and best-selling author of The Inside Innovator: A Practical Guide to Intrapreneuership, will inspire us to thrive by sharing intrapreneurship best practices and key principles.

It is not too late; there is still time for you to register for in-person attendance or for the live stream (the unconference is in-person only).

Check out the Day 1 Agenda and Register: Learn about what’s going on in the world of ID & Data. Contribute. Get involved. The event is FREE, reserve your in-person or virtual seat today

Remember The more the merrier!!! Don’t forget to tell your friends and colleagues about the event—have them register, and have them be your +1, +2,  +3, etc. You get the idea. Let’s connect, communicate, and make a difference together, and have some fun while we’re at it (there will be several networking breaks and a cocktail reception in the evening).

Bonus Day: On May 22, 2024, we’ll be hosting an in-person Empowerment Tech Unconference at the University of College London (space is limited to 50 people). This is a unique experience where fellow attendees set the agenda and cover the topics that are most meaningful to them. Reserve your seat.

We hope to see you see next week.

Michael Becker

MEF PD&I Working Group Chairman – Founder, CEO, Identity Praxis


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