He didn’t say what SecureKey charges customers for the service, but said governments can save hundreds of millions of dollars in call centre and password administration costs.
Essentially the brokerage services relies on the identity authentication done by banks and credit card companies. Meanwhile users are likely to prefer using cards from these sources, along with the passwords they are familiar with, as a single security source rather than have to create new passwords for every organization they have contact with.
SecureKey customers – governments and businesses – don’t retain or have access to the identity information, Wolfond said.
Wolfond is an entrepreneur who has co-founded and sold several companies. Among them was Footprint Software, a maker of financial applications for banks, sold in 1995 to IBM; and 724 Solutions, a maker of messaging solutions for wireless carriers, which went public in 2000. After the market dropped three years ago, 724 Solutions was bought by California-based Mobixell Networks in January 2010.
Wolfond said he and several former 724 Solutions staff began working on the concept behind SecureKey in 2007.
“How you do identity on the Internet has been a problem forever,” he said. “There’s no way to know who you are.”
SecureKey’s approach of leveraging NFC, he said, could “wipe out fraud.”
He noted that several provinces are looking at embedding smart chips in drivers licences and healthcare cards.
Wolfond, who had been CEO, said he'll now concentrate on working with SecureKey customers and making sure the company's technology is the best. He added he's not thinking about the next company he'll create, nor selling or taking SecureKey public.
"We’re still building the business, so we’re not looking at exit plans right now. We think we’re in the right place in how to solve this problem of identity and authentication for banks, for telcos, for governments. We think its still early days for building out that business.”