IDentity – Problems in the system

The world is completely packed with people and all governments insist on every individual having an identity. The days of gypsies and hippies are over, aaaarghhh!!! As the number of individual increases, with them also increases their needs, their assets, their purchases and their holdings. Today every person own a house, has a car, bank account (almost everybody, I don’t have money), phone numbers, various certificates of domicile, citizenship, property ownership,birth certificates, loan papers, credit card info and score, and the list goes on. All of these items are a part or our social identity. No I am not talking about our spiritual identity, and who we are from the inner-self, but the actual physically touchable and visible identity, that proves everything we claim about us. Our birth certificate proves whether we were actually born on the date we celebrate our birthday, our property certificate says whether we actually own the house we live in or not and our graduation certificate says did we actually graduate from a particular college which we claim to have attended.

we are bound by the id’s we poses

Our identity, is defined by these certificates or let’s say endorsements provided to us by widely accepted issuers. By issuers I mean, our school provides us our grad cert, so our school is the issuer, but how do we know it’s widely accepted or not. Well the school again has to gain its own endorsements to prove that the endorsements it give to students are acceptable elsewhere, even if the school is not known there. Just like a simple chain, I endorse you and you have the power to endorse others and so it continues. At the very heart of this chain is “Trust”, without this the system of endorsement and identity cannot operate.

Troublesome situations while handling idenities

This system has been operable since decades and centuries, but is failing support the ever-growing needs of the world. How you ask? Lets understand this with an example, my example. Lets call me Wick, (John Wick, stop laughing), I go to a bank to apply for house loan, the guy at the stall asks me for my birth certificate, I produce the cert as asked, now he asks me for an income certificate, I give him that too, then he ask me for an array of other certificates that prove my citizenship, whether I do have the money I claim I earned, can I actually pay them back if they give me a loan. This is a tiring job, but what’s more difficult about this is it takes a lot of time. As much as 2-3 hours if you have all the certificates in order, which is an ideal situation. In reality Wick forgets his income certificate at home, Wicks credit score is not good, Wick lost his driver’s license and has to apply and wait till the new one arrives. Wick is in a pickle, because he wants to buy a house, a completely month or maybe much more than that wasted just to apply for the loan, set aside the uncertainty if it would be granted or not.

so many forms of ids

Okay now we have seen how difficult it become if all your identity is scattered, issued by different issuers, and thus difficult to assemble at the time of need. Now let say Wick is a hotel manager, he is there at his desk early in the morning all suited up and ready for work. A gentleman arrives, well dressed with a briefcase, and ask Wick for the most expensive suite in the hotel. Wick is delighted to hear this, but first he must check whether the man is not an imposter, so he asks him for his ID’s, all seemed in order so the man is granted a sweet suite. The man spends his weekend lavishly, liquor, ladies and all sorts, but when the weekend ends and it’s time to pay, the man just disappears. Wick is again in a pickle, all the ids provided to him were fake and now he has to take the heat, maybe be fired for his mistake. But what could he do when the guest provided all forged ID’s, ring any bell? Catch me if you can. Problem with these paper based ids, is that it can be easily forged, repeatedly.

 

Now let’s get to the third scenario, Wick needs a new job and is picked up by a strange-looking old guy in black tinted goggles. Wick comes to know this guy works for a secret agency that deals with extraterrestrial creature, and he is more than happy to work with them. After all why wouldn’t he, he gets the cool suit, guns and all the good things. But before he sets on his adventurous job, his identity and everything that proves his existence must be erased, right from his birth certificate. Sound like some movie? Men in black, no way, it’s my original story. Anyways, the process is done and all his records are erased, well did you see what they did there? They tampered with a person’s identity. The third problem with identities is that they are easily tamperable. They can be changed, and even erased. This is a real threat, and supports more crimes, as anybody could change their identities and delete their criminal records, oh what a disaster.

Summing up

So by now we know what I mean with identity, and what are the problems with the identity system in today’s world.

 

  1. Is very difficult to manage
  2. Can be easily forged and thus less trust-worthy
  3. Can be tampered

 

By far we know the problem, but what is the solution. For that you will have to read my next blog. To read, click on the below link.

Picture courtesy : https://www.pexels.com

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