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Mastercard Introduces Consumer-Centric Model for Digital Identity

A consumer charter-based system that gives consumers control

Mastercard (NYSE: MA) introduced a vision for digital identity in today’s increasingly connected world.  A new paper, Restoring Trust in a Digital World, presents a detailed framework of how digital identity will work, starting with the individual sitting at the heart of every digital interaction.

Guiding this model are Mastercard’s Principles of Digital Identity that will underpin the system.  These principles focus on data rights and ownership, confidentiality, consent, transparency, security and inclusion.  They amount to a fundamental individual right: “I own my identity and I control my identity data.”

Inclusion Everyone has a right to a digital identity
Ownership Individuals own their identity and personal data
Simplicity An individual’s use of their digital identity should be simple and intuitive
Confidentiality An individual has the right to keep their digital identity information private
Consent An individual’s digital identity should not be used or shared without their explicit consent or as permitted by law
Transparency Individuals have the right to understand how their digital identity data is used and shared
Security & Integrity Identity data and transactions that involve an individual’s digital identity should be held with the highest standards of security and integrity
Data Rights Individuals should have the right to access, correct and delete their identity data, and the right to recourse if their rights are violated
Fair Use An individual’s identity data will be used only for legitimate, fair and non-discriminatory purposes
Choice Individuals should have a choice of a digital identity provider and the right to opt out

“The big question for digital interactions in a hyper-connected age is: how do you trust someone you don’t know, can’t see and isn’t present in person?” said Ajay Bhalla, president of Cyber & Intelligence Solutions for Mastercard.  “This is an area we’ve been exploring for some time, in discussion with a range of different groups.  It’s with this insight that we imagine a world where a person’s identity and the devices operating on their behalf can be verified immediately, safely and securely, where access is gained without passwords and data is exchanged only with consent.”

Mastercard’s model embodies privacy-by-design and does not aggregate identity data.  It will enable digital interactions to occur with minimal data exchanged and only when needed, and will safeguard data and the use of data effectively such that the users are in control, with a person’s identity securely bound to their smartphone.

Access to a digital identity will unlock new and enhanced experiences for people as they interact with businesses, service providers and their communities online, introducing a more efficient online shopping experience, a more seamless process for opening a bank account or filing taxes, and streamlining use of e-mail, social media and entertainment platforms.  It will also reduce the risk of fraud and identity theft.

Ajay Bhalla said: “Digital identity requires a collective effort.  Building on our strategic partnership with Microsoft and working with a range of industry players, we are committed to facilitating the network and helping define the rules and governance.  Together, we have a real opportunity to transform digital engagement so that it is convenient and doesn’t compromise on security.”

About Mastercard

Mastercard (NYSE: MA),, is a technology company in the global payments industry. Our global payments processing network connects consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. Mastercard products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MastercardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.

Source: Mastercard

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