- Data stored within these digital wallets grants citizens the power to oversee the distribution of their credentials.
- Both the Argentine government and the city of Buenos Aires view this digital identity framework as a public good.
Buenos Aires, the capital city of Argentina, embarked on a journey to merge its administrative processes with cutting-edge blockchain technology. Starting October, the city’s residents will be able to gain access to their identity documents through a digital wallet.
The announcement came on 28 September.
The initial batch of documents introduced to the blockchain encompassed birth and marriage certificates, as well as proof of income and academic records.
However, this innovative endeavor doesn’t stop here. The city has further plans to integrate health data and payment management in the future. The government also aims to finalize a comprehensive roadmap for nationwide expansion of this blockchain-driven solution by the end of 2023.
Powering this ambitious project’s infrastructure is QuarkID, a digital identity protocol developed by the Web3 company Extrimian.
QuarkID wallets operate on zkSync Era, an Ethereum [ETH] scaling protocol that employs zero-knowledge rollups, which allows one party to verify the truth of a statement without revealing specific details about that statement itself.
Guillermo Villanueva, CEO of Extrimian, commented on this groundbreaking move, stating,
“This is a monumental step towards a safer and more efficient future for government services in Latin America.”
A technological leap towards a safer and more efficient future
One of the distinguishing features of this blockchain-based digital identity initiative is the concept of self-sovereignty. Data stored within these digital wallets grants citizens the power to oversee the distribution of their credentials when engaging with government entities, businesses, or fellow individuals.
Notably, both the Argentine government and the City of Buenos Aires view this digital identity framework as a public good. Diego Fernandez, Buenos Aires’ secretary of innovation, highlighted the significance of this technological leap, stating,
“With this development, Buenos Aires becomes the first city in Latin America, and one of the first in the world, to integrate and promote this new technology and set the standard for how other countries in the region should use blockchain technology for the benefit of their people.”
However, it’s important to note that Argentine officials are also closely examining another digital ID project called Worldcoin [WDC]. In August, privacy concerns regarding Worldcoin’s collection, storage, and utilization of customer data triggered a formal investigation by local authorities.
Worldcoin, which made its global debut in July, was founded by Sam Altman, a co-founder of OpenAI. The project employs retinal scans to verify user identities, a feature that has also raised eyebrows in Europe and Africa.