ID.me is trying to dispel some of the privacy concerns that critics have levelled at the platform in the past few months. The company was celebrating its partnership with the IRS at the beginning of the year, but that arrangement has since landed the identity provider in legal hot water as lawmakers have opened investigations into ID.me’s previously undisclosed use of one-to-many facial recognition tech.
With that in mind, the company has now appointed Tadayoshi (Yoshi) Kohno as its new Head of Technology & Equity Research. Kohno is a professor with the University of Washington’s Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering, and is widely regarded as one of the country’s leading experts on the ethical use of AI technology. As Head of Technology & Equity research, Kohno will be asked to review all of ID.me’s research and sign off on it before it goes to print.
Kohno will presumably be reviewing the research to help spot any privacy or equity concerns. In addition to his responsibilities as a professor, Kohno acts as UW’s Associate Director for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Access, and he has adjunct appointments with the university’s Information School and the School of Law. His research has garnered multiple academic awards, with the most notable being the Golden Goose Award he received for leading a research project that identified security gaps that made connected cards vulnerable to hacking. That research ultimately forced the auto industry to improve their security practices.
“Yoshi’s leadership in the fields of equity, access, privacy, and security will build on ID.me’s unwavering commitment to the same, increase transparency, and help provide all people with access to a digital identity,” said ID.me Co-Founder and CEO Blake Hall.
“I’m excited to bring my experience to bear and engage with the ID.me team to continue charting the future of digital identity,” added Kohno.
Kohno is an expert on the subject of web tracking, and is therefore well-qualified to speak to the risks with current and next-generation connected devices. ID.me, meanwhile, has made a point of offering manual identity reviews to placate the fears of people who are worried about the use of automated facial recognition tech.
June 16, 2022 – by Eric Weiss