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God desires that ALL people would accept God's love and salvation through Jesus Christ. God has compelled me to share information with the world relating to the biblical seven year tribulation in order to share Truth in a deceived world.

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. (John 1:1-5)

Jesus answered, "I AM the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6)

Friday, November 10, 2006

Microsoft's Vision for an Identity Metasystem / Microsoft Infocard or CardSpace

Summary: The Identity Metasystem is an interoperable architecture for digital identity that assumes people will have several digital identities based on multiple underlying technologies, implementations, and providers. Using this approach, customers will be able to continue to use their existing identity infrastructure investments, choose the identity technology that works best for them, and more easily migrate from old technologies to new technologies without sacrificing interoperability with others.

Digital Identity: The Challenge
For users and businesses alike, the Internet continues to be increasingly valuable. More people are using the Web for everyday tasks, from shopping, banking, and paying bills to consuming media and entertainment. E-commerce is growing, with businesses delivering more services and content across the Internet, communicating and collaborating online, and inventing new ways to connect with each other.

But as the value of what people do online has increased, the Internet itself has become more complex, criminalized, and dangerous. Online identity theft, fraud, and privacy concerns are on the rise, stemming from increasingly sophisticated practices such as "phishing". The multiplicity of accounts and passwords users must keep track of and the variety of methods of authenticating to sites result not only in user frustration, known as "password fatigue", but also insecure practices such as reusing the same account names and passwords at many sites.

The root of these problems is that the Internet was designed without a system of digital identity in mind. In efforts to address this deficiency, numerous digital identity systems have been introduced, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. But no one single system meets the needs of every digital identity scenario. And even if it were possible to create one system that did, the reality is that many different identity systems are in use today, with still more being invented. As a result, the current state of digital identity on the Internet is an inconsistent patchwork of ad hoc solutions that burdens people with different user experiences at every Web site, renders the system as a whole fragile, and constrains the fuller realization of the promise of e-commerce.

What is the Identity Metasystem?
Given that universal adoption of a single digital identity system or technology is unlikely ever to occur, a successful and widely employed identity solution for the Internet requires a different approach—one with the capability to connect existing and future identity systems into an identity metasystem. This metasystem, or system of systems, would leverage the strengths of its constituent identity systems, provide interoperability between them, and enable creation of a consistent and straightforward user interface to them all. The resulting improvements in cyberspace would benefit everyone, making the Internet a safer place with the potential to boost e-commerce, combat phishing, and solve other digital identity challenges.

In the offline world, people carry multiple forms of identification in their wallets, such as driver's licenses or other government-issued identity cards, credit cards, and affinity cards such as frequent flyer cards. People control which card to use and how much information to reveal in any given situation.

Similarly, the identity metasystem makes it easier for users to stay safe and in control when accessing resources on the Internet. It lets users select from among a portfolio of their digital identities and use them at Internet services of their choice where they are accepted. The metasystem enables identities provided by one identity system technology to be used within systems based on different technologies, provided an intermediary exists that understands both technologies and is willing and trusted to do the needed translations.

It's important to note that the identity metasystem does not compete with or replace the identity systems it connects. Rather, it plays a role analogous to that of the Internet Protocol (IP) in the realm of networking. In the 1970s and early 1980s, before the invention of IP, distributed applications were forced to have direct knowledge of the network link, be it Ethernet, Token Ring, ArcNet, X.25, or Frame Relay. But IP changed the landscape by offering a technology-independent metasystem that insulated applications from the intricacies of individual network technologies, providing seamless interconnectivity and a platform for including not-yet-invented networks (such as 802.11 wireless) into the network metasystem.

In the same way, the goals of the identity metasystem are to connect individual identity systems, allowing seamless interoperation between them, to provide applications with a technology-independent representation of identities, and to provide a better, more consistent user experience with all of them. Far from competing with or replacing the identity systems it connects, the metasystem relies on the individual systems to do its work!

Identities Function in Contexts
The identities held by a person in the offline world can range from the significant, such as birth certificates, passports, and drivers' licenses, to the trivial, such as business cards or frequent coffee buyer's cards. People use their different forms of identification in different contexts where they are accepted.

Identities can be in or out of context. Identities used out of context generally do not bring the desired result. For example, trying to use a coffee card to cross a border is clearly out of context. On the other hand, using a bank card at an ATM, a government-issued ID at a border, a coffee card at a coffee stand, and a Passport Network (formerly .NET Passport) account at MSN Hotmail are all clearly in context.

In some cases, the distinction is less clear. You could conceivably use a government-issued ID at your ATM instead of a bank-issued card, but if this resulted in the government having knowledge of each financial transaction, some people would be uncomfortable. You could use a Social Security Number as a student ID number, but that has significant privacy implications, even facilitating identity theft. And you can use Passport accounts at some non-Microsoft sites, but few sites chose to enable this; even where it was enabled, few users did so because they felt that Microsoft's participation in these interactions was out of context.

Studying the Passport experience and other digital identity initiatives throughout the industry led us to work with a wide range of industry experts to codify a set of principles that we believe are fundamental to a successful, broadly adopted, and enduring digital identity system on the Internet.

Blogger's note: Soon, all those cards in your wallet will not be needed. A simple bioscan of your finger(s), hand, and/or eyes will suffice. Is this what John was trying to explain in the book of Revelation? He thought everyone was required to have a mark on their hand or forehead in order to buy or sell. Could he have seen us having our bioscans done? (Coming in 2007)

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