Home Blockchain Buenos Aires to issue blockchain-based digital ID

Buenos Aires to issue blockchain-based digital ID

by Abigail Bautista

Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina, is taking a significant step towards modernizing its bureaucracy by integrating blockchain technology. Starting in October, residents of the city will have access to their identity documents through a digital wallet. This move is aimed at improving efficiency and security in government services.

The initial documents that will be available on-chain include birth and marriage certificates, as well as proof of income and academic verification. In the future, health data and payment management will also be integrated. By the end of 2023, there will be a roadmap for extending this blockchain-based solution to the entire country.

The digital identity protocol behind this project is QuarkID, developed by Web3 firm Extrimian. QuarkID wallets are powered by zkSync Era, an Ethereum scaling protocol that utilizes zero-knowledge rollups. This technology enables one party to prove the truth of a statement to another party without revealing any specific information about the statement itself.

“This is a monumental step towards a safer and more efficient future for government services in Latin America,” said Guillermo Villanueva, CEO of Extrimian. The data stored in these wallets will be self-sovereign, allowing citizens to manage the delivery of their credentials when interacting with the government, businesses, and other individuals. ZkSync Era will serve as the settlement layer for QuarkID, ensuring that each citizen holds the correct credentials.

The Argentine government and the City of Buenos Aires view this digital identity framework as a public good. Diego Fernandez, Buenos Aires’ secretary of innovation, stated, “With this development, Buenos Aires becomes the first city in Latin America, and one of the first in the world, to integrate and promote this new technology and set the standard for how other countries in the region should use blockchain technology for the benefit of their people.”

However, it is worth noting that Argentine officials are also examining another digital ID initiative called Worldcoin. Privacy concerns related to the collection, storage, and use of customer data by Worldcoin are currently under investigation. The project, founded by Sam Altman, has faced scrutiny not only in Argentina but also in Europe and Africa since its global launch in July. Worldcoin collects retinal scans for user verification.

The integration of blockchain technology in Buenos Aires’ bureaucracy represents a significant milestone in the adoption of decentralized solutions for government services. This move will not only improve efficiency but also ensure the security and sovereignty of citizens’ data. As other countries in the region observe Buenos Aires’ progress, it is likely that we will see similar initiatives being implemented to harness the potential of blockchain technology for the benefit of their own populations.

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