/ July 3, 2008

Are Internet ID Cards the Way of the Future?

Several internet and computing giants, including Microsoft, Google, PayPal, and Novell, have come together to inaugurate the Information Card Foundation, which advocates a switch from site-specific passwords to internet wide ID cards for those surfing the web. According to Robert Blakeley, a consultant for the project, the technology behind this idea is ready for widespread use, but its success depends on the willingness of individual websites to adopt the ID card model. Some analysts say this process could take years, but that the card’s benefits would be worth the lengthy transition. For example, the ID card system could prevent phishing and fraud, while eliminating the need for a user to enter credit card information while shopping online. And of course, the hassle of remembering which password works for which site would disappear.

The ID card would be a digital mimicry of a traditional driver’s license, which would also include information like a credit card number or billing address. Each internet user could control the information sent to specific sites, to keep from passing on unnecessary content.

What do you think? Would this proposed ID card make our internet usage more secure? Please leave your thoughts below.

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