The FutureID project is partially funded by the European Commission within the 7th Framework Programme. Its consortium consists of 19 partners from 11 countries and is coordinated by Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft. The three-year research project started in November 2012. The objective of the FutureID project is to build an identity management infrastructure for Europe in support of a single market of online services. This requires the availability and large-scale use of trusted and secure identities that replace current password credentials.
In this guest blog (see ‘related links’ below), the authors Bud P. Bruegger and Heiko Roßnagel comment: “As learned, for example, from the experience of rolling out government electronic identities (eIDs) in Europe, the key factor to success is to reach a critical mass of user base and available services. This is often called a ‘chicken and egg problem’. Users are only interested in taking up a credential, if it provides access to a critical mass of services; service providers are only willing to invest in a credential if they bring a large enough base of potential users to justify the investment.”
In this situation, the authors point out, it is highly unlikely that a single credential or identity management technology reaches the required critical mass by itself. For this reason, the FutureID project attempts to build an open infrastructure able to potentially integrate all existing and future credentials. “Reaching a critical mass across all user bases and all available services seems to be the most promising way to go. The base idea of the FutureID infrastructure is to build a bridge between user credentials on one side and services on the other.”
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