World in Progress: Digital identity and the brave new world of data | World| Breaking news and perspectives from around the globe | DW | 24.03.2021
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World in Progress: Digital identity and the brave new world of data

Traveling without a passport - just by being scanned at an airport? Projects to test this kind of digital identity have already started. For some, that sounds great. Others fear the dangers posed by the possible abuse of data collected by companies and governments. Thomas Kruchem explores the possibilities and dangers of digital identities. The presenter is Natalie Muller.

Listen to audio 30:00

Hundreds of millions of people across the world don't have an identity card, a birth ceritificate, a passport. That's a huge problem, whether they need to see a doctor, go to school or become refugees. So what if we could prove who we are - just by having our faces or eyes scanned? Traveling across borders - without having to wait?

Plans and tests for this kind of transnational identity already exist. But what if everything about us - who we are, what we like, whether we pay our parking tickets, which diseases we've had - is  stored forever in a blockchain? What if that data is used to manipulate and pressure us? Thomas Kruchem explores the possibilties and dangers of digital identities and mass surveillance.