Authoreon: Authorization, Authentication, Verification & Certification
There has been an escalating, universal concern about security in the digital world. Authoreon welcomes a wave of protocols and applications designed to disrupt and improve these fears; ensuring trust and security in digital transactions where our conventional defences are getting increasingly vulnerable and failing us.
Launched early this year by blockchain architect and evangelist, Chris Heinze, Authoreon is a start-up that aspires to solve the problem by “Decentralizing Authority for consumers, corporations, governments & organizations”. Authoreon.io whose token sale went live recently, aims to provide a unified platform for trusted identity management with all ingredients necessary to become a standard for authorization, authentication, verification & certification in a decentralized network.
This article takes a closer look at the Authoreon solution, ICO sale and development roadmap to turn their vision into reality.
How Blockchain Technology Enables New Models of Security
Bitcoin first brought cryptocurrency into universal acceptance, as it was the first blockchain application that was introduced to the world. However, trust and security were the two main concerns driving the underlying design of Bitcoin and the concept of blockchains. Essentially, a blockchain is a publicly accessible and decentralized database that is distributed over the Internet. Transaction records are publicly kept in cryptographic form. These transactions are trustless, meaning they can be computed, verified and recorded using automated consensus methods; because this is across a peer-to-peer network of computers, it eliminates the need for an intermediary of third party to manage or control information. Participants do it for themselves and each other.
As the blockchain grows, it is virtually impossible to tamper with or takeover without co-operation of more than half the network, thus creating an immutable history of transactions.
The feature of immutability is what enables a background: the ability to track ownership of an asset from origin, which has significant implications in upholding rightful (read: legal) ownership and enforcing contracts. Furthermore, this has provided applications to a number of government and public agency use cases that involve the recording and preservation of personal and property records. As early as 2012, governments such as Estonia have taken the lead in adopting blockchain technology for use in cases such as national health, judicial, legislative, security and commercial code systems.
Platform and Architecture
Starting with Bitcoin, the first cryptocurrency or crypto-token, the number of alt-coins (such as Ethereum) has grown to thousands. While an alt-coin can create its separate blockchain, many applications also make use of existing chains such as Bitcoin or Ethereum.
Authoreon is also designed to run on the Ethereum blockchain with Autheon tokens forming the currency or fuel that powers transactions and can be used as a cryptocurrency.
Authoreon’s architecture consists of three layers: the (Ethereum) blockchain to record transaction history, with two overlay protocol layers unique to Authoreon – Synapse and Access Lock.
Synapse, inspired from the human brain synapse (a structure that enables communication between neurons) is the decentralized application layer (or dapp) that will provide the implementation of use cases related to verifying identities against the stored access authorization and, storing data safely and effectively. The Synapse application layer is also the intermediary between the blockchain (Proof-of-work) and the access lock layer (Proof-of-Stake), generating temporary access for authorized instances. The Access Lock layer is the one that establishes the authorization protocol; granting access through a proprietary 2²-key-algorithm developed by Authoreon.
Authoreon is currently in the process of filing a patent for the Access Lock algorithm; details of which are not fully disclosed. The overall mechanism can be described as one an improved form of traditional two-factor authentication. In the 2²-key-algorithm, this is achieved by providing one static key with a dynamic (temporary) key only if the other key is still valid by authorization and vice versa. Access is only granted to two dynamic keys.
Further, Authoreon’s access lock layer secures authentication with a network consensus, using a proof of stake method, which is provided by Authoreon stakeholders (individuals who own Autheon coins or customers with a lot of assets or transactions in the blockchain). The hash function calculation is replaced with a digital signature that proves ownership of the stake. Like mining rewards, Authoreon also provides an incentive for proof of stake participation to validate access lock layer authentication, by enabling the 'minting' of coins as a reward for the stakeholder whose digital signature is accepted by the network consensus.
Authoreon’s security framework brings together several factors that leverage the properties and characteristics of blockchain technology, cryptography, artificial intelligence (AI) and substitution algorithms to provide maximum security, authorization and traceability.
The platform will have applications to a wide range of use cases related to authorization, authentication, verification and certification of transactions to enforce trust and security.
Illustrative use cases in Authoreon’s white paper include immutable digital identities for consumers on the blockchain and robust two-factor authentication for platforms such as social networks using the 2²-key-authentication.
A use case that addresses the trade-off between individual data privacy and information required by security agencies, envisions smart contracts to enable event based, authority access, such as court mandates for investigation of telecommunications data or call records.
Provenance use cases include asset and intellectual property registration and tracking on the blockchain through the supply chain, preventing theft, fraud and copyright infringement. Another use case that holds potential is the ability to secure IoT transactions using Authoreon’s three-layer architecture.
Products and Roadmap
Like Ethereum, Authoreon proposes to provide a full stack of solutions starting from platform interface through Mist and Metamask browsers and a mobile app that includes an enable key authorization functions, mining and wallet interactions.
Also in the pipeline are full solution Smart-Contracts-as-a-Service applications tailored to different security use cases, each with a separate operating and pricing model.
Most importantly, Authoreon plans to roll out API extensions and plug-ins along with a marketplace for third party extensions by mid-2018. The platform will be accessible via 2²-key-protocol-APIs for external developers. An extensible platform will encourage developer participation and help Authoreon become a disruptive force in the prevailing landscape of identity management and cybersecurity solutions.
Authoreon has an ambitious strategy to deploy the platform and products to government, consumer and technology developers. The security use cases and applications have already evinced interest from government agencies.
To bring the Authoreon vision to reality, and implement the platform and products, Authoreon has launched the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) from August 5 to December 31, 2017. The objective of the ICO is to get public participation to spur development of Authoreon roadmap and a platform ecosystem.
Membership/ownership is designated through Autheon tokens, denoted as AUTH. The crowd sale will generate an initial supply of 1 billion Autheon tokens - each token priced at ETH 0.00133333. 33% of the total supply will be available in the ICO, another 33% to incentivize participation and Authoreon will retain the remainder, aside from a 1% that is put towards presale costs. Bonuses of 25% to 5% in Autheon tokens are being offered to early contributors.
The Authoreon ICO is targeting funds from a minimum of $500 to a maximum of $34 million USD. Participant’s funds will be sent to an Ethereum Smart Contract that will mint equivalent Autheon tokens instantly and credit to the buyer’s online account. Smart contracts will make funds available for withdrawal upon the close of the crowd sale. Once completed (total duration or maximum tokens issued) Ethereum funds will then transferred be to a Coinable multi-sig escrow wallet owned by the collective token holders.
Token ownership gives holders voting rights, in some cases in proportion to their holding. Funds will be allocated by project to prioritize and accelerate development. Once implemented, Autheon tokens will be used as platform currency and transaction “fuel” used to access certain functionalities of the platform including registering a new asset, transferring an asset, and a variety of other authorization features.
Cybersecurity ranks among the highest of global concerns with digital assets and data under threat from public agencies and malevolent actors alike. The blockchain and advances in cryptography have the potential to provide strong and scalable solutions, well aligned to the decentralized architecture of the Internet. Since the advent of Bitcoin, multiple applications have been seen on the market addressing trust and security use cases from asset authentication, to identity management and encrypting transactions on the blockchain itself.
Authoreon’s multi-layer defence platform that leverages the blockchain and new authentication protocols to enforce trust and security has the potential to grow into one such alternative. In the evolving world of blockchain and increasing sophistication of cybersecurity threats, patenting the technology, speed to market and widespread adoption will be crucial to its success.
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