Blockchain Authentication : Take Back the Control
The other day I was watching the Ethereum Community Conference 4, and I was thinking how ironic it was that the conference about the biggest decentralized system in the world was happening in a country that just adopted a sanitary passport without which you can no longer work, travel or go to the hospital. Anyway, Vitalik Buterin was giving a talk about the things that matter outside DeFi (go watch it) and I’d like to share some thoughts with you, because I’m very hyped by this technology, and it also concerns Social Rocket.
Web 1.0 gave us all the information at the tip of a finger. Web 2.0 gave anyone the opportunity to participate in this informational party. And Web 3.0 is unlocking value by allowing us to create programmable scarcity. But Web 3.0 also has the potential to be the shift during which the people will take the control back over their data.
It’s been two paragraphs already and you still have no idea what I’m talking about. It’s so simple, yet so powerful : Blockchain Authentication. When you’re presented the choice between registering to a new web application by fulfilling a long tedious form or by login in with Facebook or Google, you usually take the path of least resistance, even though deep inside of you, you know you just gave one more bit of power to monopolistic tech giants. Blockchain authentication allows you to connect on various web application using a smart contract wallet, such as Metamask. Thus giving you a better user experience AND more privacy. Basically, the only thing representing you is your blockchain address.
Just think about some of the things it implies:
- No more lengthy forms to complete
- No more passwords
- No more useless newsletters
- No more massive data breach
- Switch or create account for all your web applications in just one click
Self-custodial public key authentication and encryption has been a dream since the 1990s. Ethereum put cryptographic keys into the hands of millions of people and smart contract wallet made it easy to build and switch between them.
If you are active in the DeFi ecosystem, you know this very well. You just connect your wallet to ANY application and here you go, you have access to everything the app has to offer. The first time I connected to Uniswap using Metamask, I felt this incredible sense of freedom, the same I had in the late 90s/early 2000s, when the internet was this wonderful place of anarchy.
Of course, with this new technology comes a problem, what if I lose my private key or if it gets stolen? Same as with crypto currencies : that’s the price to pay if you want to enjoy true freedom. And if you ever had a problem with Facebook or YouTube, you know how much they care about you as a user, the only thing their care about are the advertisers, and only the top 1%.
This article only scrapes the surface of blockchain authentication. But I think it’s enough for most people to understand how disruptive this technology can be. I’m extremely bullish for this and I want to see those «Connect with Ethereum» (or any other blockchain) on every web application. Any website that will omit this option in the future should be shamed publicly for the creepy data gatherers they are.
As pioneers in this space, it is your duty to spread awareness.