Microsoft must “U-Prove” what its plans are

Kuppinger Cole‘s analyst Felix Gaehtgens calls on Microsoft to move more quickly in announcing how we are going to make Credentica's Minimal Disclosure technology available to others in the industry.  He says,

“On March 6th, almost a month ago, Microsoft announced its acquisition of Montreal based Credentica, a technology leader in the online digital privacy area. It’s been almost a month, but the dust won’t settle. Most analysts including KCP agree that Microsoft has managed a master coup in snapping up all patents and rights to this technology. But there are fears in the industry that Microsoft could effectively try to use this technology to enrich its own platform whilst impeding interoperability by making the technology unavailable. These fears are likely to turn out to be unfounded, but Microsoft isn’t helping to calm the rumour mill – no statements are being made for the time being to clarify its intentions.”

Wow.  Felix makes a month sound like such a long time.  I'm jealous.  To me it just flew by.  But I get his message and feel the tines of his pitchfork.

Calling U-Prove a “Hot Technology” and explaining why, Felix continues,

“…if Microsoft were to choose to leverage the technology only in its own ecosystem, effectively shutting out the rest of the Internet, then it would be very questionable whether the technology would be widely adopted. The same if Microsoft were to release the specifications, but introduce a “poison pill” by leveraging its patent. This would certainly be against Microsoft’s interest in the medium to long future.”

This is completely correct.  Microsoft would have to be completely luny to try to partition the internet across vendor lines.  So, basically, you can be sure we won't.

“There is a fair amount of mistrust in the industry, sometime even bordering on paranoia because of Microsoft’s past approach to privacy and interoperability. The current heated discussion about the OOXML is an example of this. Over the last years, Microsoft has taken great pains to alleviate those fears, and has shown an willingness to work towards interoperability. But many are not yet convinced of the picture that Kim is painting. It is very much in Microsoft’s interest to make an official statement regarding its broad intentions with U-Prove, and reassure the industry if and how Microsoft intends to follow the “fifth law of identity” with regards to this new technology.

We are working hard on this.  The problem is that Microsoft can't make an announcement until we have the legal documents in place to show what we're talking about.  So there is no consipiracy or poison pill.  Just a lot of details to nail down.

Published by

Kim Cameron

Work on identity.

2 thoughts on “Microsoft must “U-Prove” what its plans are”

  1. Great. We look forward to it. (This is a non-comment really, just to show I've finally got round to installing information cards on my McBook (DigitalMe etc). And I'm pretty useless at that kind of stuff. If I can do it then a good 40% of the population will have no problem. Hurrah!)

  2. William – the comment should have appeared in real time once you used your Information Card. Sorry about that – recent misconfig.

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