About ego

The Problem

Digital identity data is fragmented, vulnerable, and centralised. It is is currently not possible for individuals to easily own, control, and digitally express their identity in a way that meets all competitive, social, regulatory, cultural, privacy, and security requirements.

This is not only a problem for individuals; because such a solution is lacking, financial institutions – and other organisations required to verify their customers’ identities – do not have a straightforward and inexpensive mechanism for receiving verified identity data for new customers applying in a digital transaction.

The Solution

Our solution is Ego; a digital identity application that allows individuals to give AML (anti-money laundering) reporting entities permission to both create and rely on attestations about customer identity.

Any reporting entity that has conducted a Customer Due Diligence process for a customer with online access to their services possesses linked, verified attributes to digital authentication credentials. In the process of conducting their own Customer Due Diligence obligations, other reporting entities may request verified attributes, which can then be supplied by other reporting entities at a greatly reduced cost. Where possible, multiple other reporting entities can attest to the legitimacy of the verified identity, reinforcing confidence in the identity with little or no marginal cost.

By doing this, two results are achieved.

First, manual Customer Due Diligence processes no longer need to be repeated for the same customer by different AML reporting entities. Overall, the cost of Customer Due Diligence will be reduced for all participating reporting entities. Second, smaller AML reporting entities unable to afford manual Customer Due Diligence, or reporting entities with no physical presence, are able to leverage the verified identities established by other entities. Afterwards, they may add their own weight to the verified identities based on their own ongoing interactions with their customers.

Reporting entities are also able to revoke their attestations about a digital identity.

Doing so improves confidence in the solution’s value to the Customer Due Diligence process by ensuring that any detected identity fraud becomes known, and does not have any perpetual impact.
Reporting entities gain value by consuming attestations of verified identity. They provide value by either making attestations (with attestations backed by stronger processes being worth more), or by hosting solution infrastructure and providing other reporting entities with access. By taking into account value gained and value provided, all participating agencies can fairly share the costs of maintaining the solution, while also enabling a safer, more secure solution for the customer.

Self-Sovereign Identity

The concept of self-sovereign identity stems from the idea that individuals and organisations should be in control of their data, and should own their digital identity as inherently as they own their physical body or company. As such, the concept necessitates the ability for people and businesses to store and manage their identity and activity data on their own devices, without relying on a centralised data repository.

Consider how people have managed their identities in the decades preceding the digital era, and even today. Most people have a drawer, cabinet, folder, or some other safe location where they store their non-digital identity documents (such as their birth certificate, passport, and utility bills). Rather than storing these documents with a third party, we hold onto them ourselves, and only temporarily hand them over to institutions when necessary.

Industry Context and Future Business Models

The New Zealand Opportunity
The full potential of blockchain technology is yet to be realised. With the right policy and approach, New Zealand can benefit from its development; economically, socially, and environmentally. Blockchain is being applied to transform fintech, agriculture, health, transport, smart grid energy systems, climate response, education, public services, and international development. It has the power to create new industries that New Zealand can participate in. Most importantly, this technology is inherently decentralised. Even more than the open internet,
it breaks down physical barriers that New Zealand has faced when attempting to participate in high-value global commerce.

It has the power to create new industries that New Zealand can participate in. Most importantly, this technology is inherently decentralised. Even more than the open internet, it breaks down physical barriers that New Zealand has faced when attempting to participate in high-value global commerce.

Average Compliance Cost per Client or Transaction

Source: Ministry of Justice Phase II Anti-money laundering reforms Business Compliance Impacts

AML Compliance Cost Breakdown

Source: LexisNexis Risk Solutions The True Cost of Anti-Money Laundering Compliance survey

The Unknowns

● The comparative cost of Standard Due Diligence and Enhanced Due Diligence
● The percentage of unconverted customers due to AML compliance friction
● The value of new business that is otherwise unobtainable without a better KYC solution.

Team

Liesl Eichholz

Liesl Eichholz

CEO

From Centrality
Viv Tatham

Viv Tatham

COO

From Kiwibank
Craig McGeachie

Craig McGeachie

CTO

From Datacom
Andy Higgs

Andy Higgs

General Manager / Strategic Partnerships

From Centrality
Simon Hay

Simon Hay

Senior Manager Strategy

From Kiwibank
Tim Ransom

Tim Ransom

Head of Digital Identity

From Datacom
Kevin Whitmore

Kevin Whitmore

Business Innovation Advisor

From Callaghan Innovation

You can contact us at contact@egoidentity.nz

Get in touch!

8 + 8 =

You can contact us at contact@egoidentity.nz