News & Resources

White House recommends a single online identity for web users

May 03, 2011 Brian Bradley

In response to a report issued by the Commerce Department in December, the White House has proposed "trusted" online identity for users in cyberspace, notes PC Magazine. The report recommended a set of principles for how companies collect and use people's data and privacy protection for cloud computing. The National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace is a government effort to ditch the user ID/password setup for a universal identity that users would obtain from a private company that specializes in identity verification, the media outlet adds. According to the NSTIC website, a contributing factor to online privacy invasion is the unmanageable number of passwords people must remember to access their accounts. Many people don't even try, they just re-use the same ones for all of their accounts. This system may allow users to potentially access email, online shopping and social networking sites through a single ID, notes Consumerist. The system would be voluntary, and the government would not require that everyone get a trusted ID. "Even if you do choose to get a credential from an ID provider, you would still be able to surf the web, write a blog, visit chat rooms or do other things online anonymously or under a pseudonym," the NSTIC website explains.