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[D.FINE Interview] Metadium on DID

Personal information rights are a hot issue with IT companies hoovering up data and using it to track people and markets. One possible solution is to use the blockchain and decentralized technologies. DID (decentralized identifiers) are getting quite a bit of attention. D.FINE, which is the main conference at the Korea Blockchain Week 2019 (KBW2019) and sponsored by JoinD, will have a separate session on DID. In Korea, Metadium has been preparing for a long time on DID related projects. The following is an interview with Metadium CEO Justin Park. Q. Explain the Metadium project Metadium is a project for realizing the value of data self-sovereign identity through the implementation of blockchain-based DID. Metadium is providing an enterprise-level DIDaaS (DID-as-a-service) solution, and we are working closely with Coinplug, a local company specializing in blockchain technology. Metadium is contributing to various public projects that Coinplug is participating in by providing DID technology knowhow and platforms. While personal information is authorized by the government or public institutions, there is also personal information about the user. Metadium, unlike other projects, aims at creating an identity platform that includes the personal preferences. Q. Brave Software has accused Google of leaking personal information to advertisers, working around GDPR (Europe’s general data protection regulations). When do you think Korea will put in place its own legislation similar to GDPR? My understanding is that currently the Korean government and the National Assembly discussing a personal information protection law, information telecommunication law and credit information law. In order to evaluate the appropriateness of the European GDPR, the revised bill on personal information protection needs to pass. Unfortunately it is still being held back at the National Assembly. However, the world has learned about the scandal involving Facebook and Cambridge Analytica. And as there are several cases on personal information protection, I expect changes to take place also in Korea. Q. Decentralization makes it inconvenient for users. Not only is the concept of decentralization itself unfamiliar, it also demands personal responsibility. As such, wouldn’t the DID face difficulty? While educating people will be a huge part, we will have to think a lot and raise user convenience. I personally don’t think that a single decentralized ID service will replace all of the existing centralized systems. This could mean a decentralized centralization. There are a lot of projects, including those involving by IT companies, at the global nonprofit Decentralized Identity Foundation. Here, the members are working together in creating a broad DID ecosystem that makes mutual compatibility possible. I believe such attempts will make DID service more convenient and that much secure. Metadium is also working on making contributions. Q. Any final comments? Currently, the discussion on DID is limited only to technology. We need a have a larger debate where individuals could participate. Already, many countries are well aware that data is more valuable than fossil fuel. In the global environment, the way we could protect our resources is data sovereignty rights. *Justin Park, Metadium CEO, will be participating as a panel at the DID session during the D.FINE conference. Further information is available at https://dfine.koreablockchainweek.com

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