10 November 2020 – London, UK – Crossword Cybersecurity Plc (AIM:CCS, “Crossword”, the “Company” or the “Group”), the technology commercialisation company focused solely on cyber security and risk, is pleased to announced that it will be working with Verifiable Credentials Ltd (VCL) and East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust on a “proof of concept” trial using VCL’s verifiable credentials application independent middleware. InnovateUK have awarded funding to support the trial to create a local system that allows NHS testing laboratories in East Kent to issue Covid-19 immunity certificates to individuals to hold securely on their smartphones, and for selected organisations to check the validity of those certificates when presented to them wherever they are, without compromising any unnecessary personal information.
VCL issued the following statement:
“We’re all looking forward to the day when a Covid-19 vaccinations are available to everyone, in order to save lives and get life back to normal. But it won’t be an instant process and there will be a potentially long period during which people will sometimes need to prove (for example, to employers and public or hospitality industry venue managers) that they have either received a vaccination, or been positively tested for antibodies from a previous infection.
It’s hugely important that such certification is secure, trust-worthy and verifiable by those who need to check them at places of work, or hospitality venues. It must above all ensure the privacy of the individual certificate holder and allow them to prove immunity, without compromising other personal data such as their date-of-birth, or home address.
For this reason, Verifiable Credentials Ltd (VCL), East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust and Crossword Cybersecurity plc (Crossword) have been awarded InnovateUK funding to conduct a “proof of concept” trial using VCL’s application independent Identiproof middleware.
Together they will create a local system that allows NHS testing laboratories in East Kent to issue Covid-19 certificates to individuals to hold securely on their smartphones, and for selected organisations to check the validity of those certificates when presented to them wherever they are, without compromising any unnecessary personal information. VCL and Crossword will lead the work on the longer-term commercialisation of the system demonstrated during the trial.”
Identiproof is a Zero Trust Architecture, being an implementation of the W3C Verifiable Credentials Data Model, together with VCL’s own W3C Web Authentication (FIDO2) compatible protocol.
An East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust spokesperson said: “This is a good example of local innovators working with local NHS organisations to develop innovative ideas. Being able to show you’ve received a COVID vaccination may help our society get back to normal.”
David Chadwick, CEO of Verifiable Credentials said “Our easy to use and administer Identiproof middleware provides all the benefits of a zero trust verifiable credentials infrastructure, whilst removing all the burden of running blockchain and DID infrastructures, as we utilise FIDO2, which is a W3C standard and a feature of most modern smartphones.”
Jake Holloway, Chief Product Officer of Crossword said, “we think that this collaboration will not only prove the case for using Identiproof in the NHS and helping to normalise society, but also lay the foundations for VCL to become a successful commercial venture and a great showcase for UK Cyber Security start-ups coming out of Academia!”
Crossword Cybersecurity plc – Tel: +44 (0) 20 3953 8460
Tom Ilube, Chief Executive Officer
Mary Dowd, Finance Director
Grant Thornton (Nominated Adviser) – Tel: +44 (0) 20 7383 5100
Colin Aaronson / Jamie Barklem
Hybridan LLP (Broker) – Tel: +44 (0)203 764 2341
Claire Louise Noyce
About Verifiable Credentials Ltd.
Verifiable Credentials Ltd is a spin-out from the University of Kent, and is led by Professor David Chadwick, a co-author of the W3C Verifiable Credentials Recommendation. Its mission it to provide everyone with free to use verifiable credential apps on their smartphones, so as to eliminate the use of usernames and passwords and make identity theft a relic of history.
About Crossword Cybersecurity plc
Crossword Cybersecurity plc focuses on the development and commercialisation of university research-based cyber security and risk management related software and cyber security consulting. The Group’s specialist cyber security product development and software engineering teams work with its university partners to develop the research concept into a fully-fledged commercial product that it will then take to market. The Group’s aim is to build up a portfolio of revenue generating, intellectual property based, cyber security products. Rizikon Assurance, Crossword’s leading product, is a SaaS platform that enables medium to large companies to assess and manage all risks from their suppliers. Nixer CyberML, Crossword’s most recently launched product, is a new tool for businesses that want to solve advanced security and cybercrime problems, such as detecting and dealing with compromised accounts, fraud, and in-application denial of service attacks. Crossword’s team of expert cyber security consultants leverages years of experience in national security, defence and commercial cyber intelligence and operations to provide bespoke advice tailored to its clients’ business needs.
About InnovateUK’s Sustainable Development Fund
The aim of this competitive fund is to help all sectors of the UK rebuild after the effects of COVID-19.
For more technical details, please visit https://verifiablecredentials.info
FIDO 2 is a trademark of the FIDO Alliance