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The idea that the internet is an ever-changing entity is not a new one, but how that entity is changing is filled with new and consistently innovative concepts. If these changes confuse you or make you scratch your head occasionally, you’re not alone. The more new concepts that emerge, the harder it is to make sure you’re being safe while keeping up with the curve.

What is the Internet of Things?

One major concept that is constantly gaining attention is one that is known as the Internet of Identities. Understanding this idea is easier if you’re familiar with the Internet of Things. According to Forbes, the Internet of Things (IoT) is defined as connecting anything with an on/off switch to the internet. This includes cell phones, computers, thermostats, lamps, etc.

The Next Step: The Internet of Identities

The Internet of Identities takes this concept one step further in that those “things” that are connected to the internet will be communicating with each other, performing tasks, storing data, and essentially learning each day as they complete the tasks we’ve given them.

The devices we connect to the internet will develop identities, gaining attributes that must be understood so that good things may come out of it and that bad things may be prevented. This process is meant to make our lives easier but will come with a number of obstacles and issues that we as a society must keep an eye out for.

What to Expect with the Internet of Identities?

When thinking of using the Internet of Identities for business purposes, one realizes what a massive overhaul that will be. The number of devices and users that will be required for a business to implement this idea successfully are astronomical—more than 21 billion by 2020.

Not only are the numbers staggering, but one must keep in mind that those devices and/or users may be temporary. Creating and managing such an infrastructure will be quite a task.

Additionally, it’s impossible not to worry about our privacy and safety. Surrendering our personal information to devices that are constantly communicating with each other is a scary thought, especially in today’s world of cyber theft.

On top of these real concerns, to maintain availability, high-performance, and security, the Internet of Identities will require continuous monitoring. It is safe to say that humans will not be able to keep paffce, so keeping the Internet of Identities running successfully will depend upon artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms that can separate normal from anomalous behavior.

One result of all of these changes would be a push toward larger corporations using the cloud. The need for constant connectivity and processing power will make this move absolutely necessary. Companies will need to create a larger infrastructure as well as hire experts in order to innovate and maintain the constantly changing devices and their communications.

The Internet of Identities may feel like it is the stuff of the future, but when you stop to think about it, you’ll realize that this is already happening. Alexa tells your thermostat when to switch on and off or your fridge to keep things at a certain temperature, and soon, she may be doing a lot more.

What do you think about the emerging reality of the Internet of Identities? Is it terrifying or a salvation?