Kim Cameron is a Canadian computer scientist and engineering leader who has worked since the emergence of the Internet to create a system of digital identity.
Kim moved to Seattle to join Microsoft in 1999 when it acquired Toronto-based Zoomit Corporation, a software company dedicated to digital identity that he co-founded in 1980. In 2000 he became the Architect of Microsoft’s Active Directory, which evolved into the most widely deployed identity technology used in enterprises globally. As the growth of the Internet made the importance of identity technology increasingly evident, his role expanded to become Chief Architect of Identity for Microsoft, a position he held until his retirement in 2019.
As one of the first technical leaders to understand and work on digital identity, Kim became increasingly concerned about the misuse of identity information. He saw web technology that invisibly undermined the privacy and autonomy of its users as an afront to individuals and a threat to the many businesses and organizations betting their future on a sustainable digital world.
He therefore led Microsoft to build systems and services that were part of an “Identity Metasystem” that worked across vendors, technologies and political boundaries. He introduced the concept of “claims” so the system could handle a world where the assertions of different entities were trusted for different things and to different extents – a major building block for what became cloud computing. In 2004 he wrote the Laws of Identity, a document that has influenced both technologists and regulators, and which Microsoft adopted to guide its innovation. At the same time he began to champion innovations that would put users in control of their own identity as a way to solve the privacy and security problems of both individuals and organizations – work he continues to advance today.
Kim grew up in Canada, attending King’s College at Dalhousie University and l’Université de Montréal. He served on RISEPTIS, the high-level European Union advisory body providing vision and guidance on security and trust in the Information Society. He has won a number of industry awards, including EEMA’s Lifetime Achievement Award (2012), the European Identity and Cloud Award for Lifetime Achievement (2013), the Identity North Founder of Canada’s Digital Economy Award (2016), Digital Identity World’s Innovation Award (2005), Network Computing’s Top 25 Technology Drivers Award (1996) and MVP (Most Valuable Player) Award (2005), Network World’s 50 Most Powerful People in Networking (2005), Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing Privacy Award (2007) and appointment to Distinguished Engineer (2009) and Silicon.com’s Agenda Setters 2007. He has an honorary Doctor of Civil Law degree from King’s College, and is on the Board of Directors for ID2020.
Kim blogs at identityblog.com,