IBM donates new privacy tool to open-source Higgins

Hal Finney hal at
Sun Feb 4 13:34:33 EST 2007

John Gilmore forwards:
> IBM donates new privacy tool to open-source
>   By  Joris Evers
>   Staff Writer, CNET
>   Published: January 25, 2007, 9:00 PM PST
> IBM has developed software designed to let people keep personal  
> information secret when doing business online and donated it to the  
> Higgins open-source project.
>   The software, called "Identity Mixer," was developed by IBM  
> researchers. The idea is that people provide encrypted digital  
> credentials issued by trusted parties like a bank or government agency  
> when transacting online, instead of sharing credit card or other  
> details in plain text, Anthony Nadalin, IBM's chief security architect,  
> said in an interview.
> ...

I just wanted to note that the idemix software implements what we
sometimes call Camenisch credentials.  This is a very advanced credential
system based on zero knowledge and group signatures.  The basic idea is
that you get a credential on one pseudonym and can show it on another
pseudonym, unlinkably.  More advanced formulations also allow for
credential revocation.  I don't know the specifics of what this software
implements, and I'm also unclear about the patent status of some of the
more sophisticated aspects, but I'm looking forward to being able to
experiment with this technology.

Hal Finney

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