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Self-Sovereign Identity: Digital Identity for the Future – Now or Later?

In 2022, it will be worthwhile to keep looking at digital identity. As soon as users are involved in new digitized processes, data protection becomes significantly more important. Data economy in the collection, processing and storage of personal data is also becoming an increasingly greater challenge for companies. This is because larger amounts of data are required for tailor-made processes.

Digital Identity and with it digitization are once again at the top of the agenda in companies in 2022. The trends towards the advancing digitization of our mobility, the smart city and the digitization of administration & e-government are only a small selection of the business fields affected. None of them are conceivable without a digital identity.

Digital identity – opportunity for users and companies

Users always use a digital identity when they use digital services. It is important for companies that provide these services to always implement the principles of the European data protection guidelines.

Data economy when collecting and processing personal data is a major challenge for companies, as they need more and more data for increasingly customized offers. This data is often stored in silos. The modalities of their storage and further use are often opaque for users. Self-Sovereign Identity (SSI) offers a smart and innovative solution to meet the requirements of companies and the needs of users alike.

Users can decide on a case-by-case basis which data to transmit to companies. The data is stored in an SSI wallet on the smartphone. In the best case, there is no longer any transmission of clear data: The companies only receive certificates that confirm certain properties. It is no longer necessary to send large copies of documents.

Use cases for self-sovereign identity

An SSI wallet can do more than just a driver’s license and ID card. The use cases span a variety of industries. Creditworthiness, access authorizations, bank details, student IDs, gym membership and much more can be securely stored in an SSI wallet. In the case of application, the transmission of certificates instead of clear data creates considerable added value. In this way, information is transmitted securely and easily without distributing superfluous data in each case. This is entirely in line with the Data Protection Act (DGSV).

This topic also plays an important role for administrations. The German Online Access Act (OZG) obliges the federal, state and local governments to offer their administration portals digitally by the end of 2022. The efforts for a European digital identity (EUid) at the national level as well as at the European level promote digital identity.

Look into the economy

The economy is obviously finding it difficult to adapt the existing processes and the new structures of self-sovereign identity. There is currently still a lack of regulations. However, these play a central role for banks and insurance companies. If you take a closer look at the current developments, it can be assumed that they will follow soon.

Digitization and SSI go hand in hand. The potential I for companies is enormous. So it is not surprising that a large number of companies are already checking use cases and SSI is already listed on the roadmaps of the Big Five. Currently, the topic is often still in the innovation departments, in challenges and tenders for innovation projects or research units. Certainly soon with the first pilot projects too.

In order not to miss this technological development, from today’s perspective it is crucial to develop use cases for self-sovereign identity in a timely manner. It is important to work out the added value for the economy in the respective company fields.

SSI & nation states

In the EU, too, it has long been recognized that the data sovereignty of users is threatened in the shadow of big tech. Germany is playing a pioneering role in the EU in efforts to get digital identity on the road with SSI technology as quickly as possible. The BMWi’s “Self Sovereign Identity for Germany” project, for example, is evidence of this. Switzerland is also intensively examining the digitization of national ID documents such as driving licenses and ID cards.

In Europe, there is clearly a political will to implement SSI technology.

Users: inside & SSI

The added value through SSI for users is clear: Simplification of the onboarding route through fast verification, data-saving, digital certificates and individualized offers – all of this will certainly be gladly accepted. Convenience and security are decisive advantages of the technology and can also be found in the user’s specifications.


Self-sovereign identity is a promising innovation. She is about to improve the handling of personal data for companies in the long term. A large number of stakeholders are already working to bring SSI into everyday life. Every new use case with the use of this technology is a piece in a new, decentralized and self-sovereign future of data. Decentralized and self-sufficient – this is the next generation for digital identity.