Most people believe they are fortified with cyber defenses against cyber hackers, but the statistics tell a very different story. Hacking incidents increased by 40 percent in 2016 over 2015. In most cases, a cyber defense consists of anti-virus and malware protection software on computers and mobile devices. But most major hacking events take place on third party systems, such as social media site Yahoo or financial information provider Equifax. In other words, “digital citizens are woefully unprotected”.

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Hacking vulnerabilities reach far beyond your computer and are rapidly expanding through “Internet of Things” (IoT) devices. Consider the healthcare market. This year, as part of the digitization of health monitoring, the health statistics of tens of millions of people will be transmitted by IoT devices through a myriad of technologies. Health devices stream your health data through cellular, wifi, Bluetooth, satellite, and NFC communications, opening up many avenues for hackers to access your digital life.
The cyber criminals appear to be gaining control of the digital economy. The cyber crime economy is estimated to be worth $6 trillion, almost double the size of Europe’s largest economy, Germany.

Sharing Trust

As long as digital information is entrusted to third party information providers, hackers will be devising ways to breach the latest security defenses. The Blockchain has a better solution—”decentralized digital identity management”. The Blockchain protects digital IDs by distributing trust. In this way, no single point of failure or security breach exists. Instead, each individual controls his/her own identity. Trust is shared across many parties, but only with the consent of the identity holder.
Take the Persona identity management system as an example. Persona distributes trust by conducting identity verification across peers and certified notaries. The individual obtains one professionally verified digital identity that meets know your customer (KYC) requirements. Increasingly, KYC compliant identities are required before gaining access to digital services.

Persona co-founder and software engineer Ioana Alexandra Frincu, a “Forbes 30, Under the age 30”, has devised a single sign-on digital identity for the interconnected world. The first level of trust verification is conducted by community members. This is accomplished by members of the Persona ecosystem verifying the identity papers of other members. In return, these members receive Persona tokens, called PRS.
The verification level of the individual increases with the number of verifications, up to a 90 percent verification rating. To receive a complete verification, the identity is verified by notaries. Another key safeguard of the Persona system is the requirement for each individual to initially register in person with a local Persona representative.

One PassPort to a Digital Life

The digital citizen can now engage in any form of activity—investing, banking, social media—by signing on with a verified digital identity, which is centrally managed. This encrypted identity has no single point where it can be targeted for theft or failure.  
The Persona zero knowledge digital  identity management system runs on it’s own blockchain developed using the ARK Blockchain technology. Stefan Neagu, one of the Ark co-founders, said that choosing ARK was only natural, in order to harness Ark blockchain unique capability to interconnect with different blockchains with it’s SmartBridge technology. Persona was developed initially during Societe Generale Startup Accelerator(one of the biggest financial institutions in Europe), back in May 2017, as a ERC20 token over Ethereum. During this stage of development we realized that if we want to do a proper digital identity then it has to be developed on its own blockchain, so the product is not affected by bloat or lag on the blockchain we developed on top. This means that Persona, like ARK, is a DPoS blockchain, with a 8 seconds block time insuring a shorter time for validation and transaction.

The PRS Initial Coin Offering

If you are ready to create a more secure digital self, PRS tokens will allow you to use the Persona identity management system. The presale started on December 15th and has already sold half its quota of 13.2 million PRS tokens, so act soon if you want to receive a 30 percent discount on PRS tokens. The full sale begins on February 1.