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Exploring the science and magic of Identity and Access Management
Saturday, May 25, 2024

Identity Map – Digital Identity

Author: Mark Dixon
Friday, December 23, 2005
7:51 am

Digital: “Of or relating to data in the form of numerical digits.”

Digital Identity refers to digital representation of Identity Attributes for an individual. The purpose of the Identity Map is to categorize and explore Identity Attributes that may have value as Digital Identities.

Wikipedia states two definitions for Digital Identity:

  • Digital identity refers to the aspect of digital technology that is concerned with the mediation of people’s experience of their own identity and the identity of other people and things.
  • Digital identity also has another common usage as the digital representation of a set of claims made by one digital subject about itself or another digital subject.

The latter definition is precisely the one used in Kim Cameron’s Laws of Identity. I don’t who specified this definition first.

The whole field of Identity Management is focused on the management of Digital Identities and using these Identities to enable secure online interchange between people or between people and systems. Digital Identity claims or assertions are the basis of establishing such trusting relationship between digital subjects.

Digital Identities include only a small subset of the Identity Attributes that below to and individual.For example, a Digital Identity representing me may include my name, address, phone number, user ID and password, but certainly wouldn’t include all my knowledge or experiences.

One person may have many Digital Identities, each representing him or her in a unique way. For example, my Digital Identity on Yahoo is significantly different than my Digital Identity at Sun Microsystems. Each Digital Identity services a different purpose.

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