Telegram Launches Passport Service for ICO Verification


via news

Messaging service Telegram launched a new crypto-oriented feature on Thursday. Telegram Passport is a “unified authorization method for services that require personal identification”. KYC for ICOs in other words, which the Russian chat platform names as one of its intended use cases for Passport. Documents will be secured by end-to-end encryption, and Telegram has promised that the service will eventually move to “a decentralized cloud”.

Telegram Muscles in on Crypto Identity Services

Telegram, led by bitcoin believer Pavel Durov, owes a significant chunk of its user base to cryptocurrency. As the preferred communications channel of tokensales, Telegram is relied upon by the crypto community on a daily basis, making its sporadic outages all the more infuriating for cryptocurrency users. Telegram Passport, its initiative for providing verification services, is a clear attempt at muscling in on the identification market that Civic and Thekey have been cornering. The service also tallies with Telegram’s plans to launch its own blockchain and to integrate a native token into its messaging app.

In a blog post announcing the initiative, Telegram revealed its first integration of the service at epayments.com where Telegram Passport users can trial its verification system. There’s also a demo page on the Telegram website where users can see how the verification service will work in practice. Verification options will include passport, driver’s license, utility bill, bank statement, and selfie: the usual methods that ICO participants will be accustomed to.

Passport Will Be Convenient but Will It Be Secure?

Telegram has been locked in a legal battle with the Russian authorities, whose secret service are determined to secure access to the data of domestic users – and probably that of overseas ones too. Pavel Durov’s company has doggedly resisted all such attempts, but despite this, some Telegram users will naturally be concerned about entrusting their most intimate details to the platform, even with the promise of end-to-end encryption.

The ability for ICOs to let Telegram vet crowdsale participants, and to bear the brunt of the expense and data storage responsibility, is sure to appeal. With the use of programmatic bots, it should be possible to whitelist participants who are Telegram Passport members. Aside from the perceived risk of entrusting Telegram with hordes of sensitive information, there is the certainty that a cottage industry selling verified Telegram accounts will inevitably spring up. For every problem that technology solves, it introduces another.

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via ct

The crypto and blockchain industry’s go-to encrypted messenger app Telegram has released a personal identification authorization tool, according to an official statement published July 26.

The tool, dubbed Telegram Passport, reportedly encrypts a user’s personal ID information and let’s users securely share their ID data with third parties, which the Telegram post elaborates on as “finance, ICOs, etc.”

According to the post, users’ ID data will currently be stored on the Telegram cloud, but “In the future, all Telegram Passport data will move to a decentralized cloud.”

The new tool is currently integrated with digital payment operator ePayments, which Telegram refers to in their post as the “first electronic payments system to support registration and verification” via the new tool. EPayments confirmed the integration on its Telegram channel, noting that “verification can be achieved in just a few clicks.”

Recently, CEO and founder of Telegram Pavel Durov was featured in Fortune’s “40 Under 40” annual rankings as one of the most prominent disruptors of global business. Before creating Telegram, Durov founded social media website VK.com.

This March, Telegram completed two $850 million closed funding rounds via the sale of the platform’s pending cryptocurrency TON, bringing its total funding to $1.7 billion. In late May Telegram’s plans to launch a public ICO were been reportedly disrupted due to the fact that the company had raised enough money via the two private ICO rounds.

Launched in 2011, ePayments says it provides payment services to more than 500,000 freelance customers and 1,000 companies worldwide. The London-based digital payment service supports transactions in cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Litecoin (LTC) and others.

This week Tokyo-headquartered tech conglomerate Hitachi and telecoms giant KDDI announced the trial of a retail coupon settlement system using blockchain technology to authenticate biometric data.

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