Semptember 09 2021

Digital identity is the mirror of the real identity

Tommaso Frigerio

When we speak about the Internet, we normally focus exclusively on data and the policies for their use. But the Internet is used also by people, real persons that have real action. When we use Internet services we are connected to the network and our main activity is to communicate. We insert data to “speak” with a remote computer. Therefore, digital identity and personal/physical identity, are not the same thing. The latter, in fact, is not (and cannot consist of) simple data or encrypted user data. In the Internet environment, our real identity translates into a digital one through actions of communication. Our digital identity in this way is our capability to be identic during the telecommunication activity and more, to be inviolable as people during the confirmation of service execution asked by compiling data. In sum, a digital identity is not data but an action, performed at the right time during the activity on the Internet. We can have this “user ceremony” – that is, the full identifiability and inviolability of the actions performed on the Internet by a real identity, thus becoming a digital identity – only if we use a safe and sound process of confirmation for execution during the telecommunication. This is what the Area WFI industrial patent ensures. Through this new approach, it becomes useless and/or impossible to clone a digital identity based on data (and not actions) in order to violate it by divorcing it from the real identity to which it was originally attached.


When we speak about digital identity, we have to understand better which is the impact of the Internet virtual world on the real and legal Identity. In fact, the Internet and the all-digital world are the mirrors of the real one. So, every time we make a copy of a material document, we create its file. Every real identification document has value because is material and particularly have a legal right when is exhibited by the right person: possession is worth title. So, when we speak of real identity we say about the unique and physical element that allows to demonstrate that the person is the same one is written on the document. We cannot define identity as either real or digital. Personal Identity is only real and above all is legal when it is possible to demonstrate the credentials to the right person. “Digital identity”, if we consider the present state of the Internet, is only a piece of information.

Legally everyone has the right to be recognized as a person before the law, as enshrined in Article 6 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights and Article 16 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Several international human rights instruments, such as Article 7 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and Article 24(2) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights also recognized a right to birth registration. Legal identity is defined as the basic characteristics of an individual's identity conferred through registration and the issuance of a certificate by an authorized civil registration authority following the occurrence of birth. In the absence of birth registration, legal identity may be conferred by a legally recognized identification authority. Proof of legal identity is defined as a credential, such as a birth certificate, identity card or digital identity credential that is recognized as proof of legal identity under national law and in accordance with emerging international norms and principles. Yet, the digital world is a virtual communication media full of information and normally we call “digital identity” the file that has certified user information. “The data-user” is not “the person”, and nowadays the 65% of data breaches are organized to steal digital identity information. The main Internet problem is telecommunication and identity is a process to communicate who I am, it cannot be a file. 56 billion lose for stolen digital identity (Reuters). We have multiple Companies that sell digital identities like the products, but the person that uses the Internet is above the user, so one person has one digital identity and more users. Thus, we have a serious problem of cloned digital identities, because, normally, companies certify users and not persons. In this way, by hacking data, one can create false digital identities. I explain better this concept writing that digital identity cannot be a file but a way how to use that file. If identic the capability to have an identity, so digital identity can be only a process of telecommunication that gives the certainty of the person for an Internet service given.

Article author:
Tommaso Frigerio

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