You are here: About > Motivation


In recent years, we have seen the emergence of services for professional and private on-line collaboration via the Internet. Nowadays, many European citizens spend work and leisure time in on-line communities, such as social networks or other real world communities that utilise online services to support their activities. Moreover, communities based on mobile communication allow users to participate in their community not only from places where fixed-line communication is available. Mobile Communities also allow for a more intensive linking of services and therefore integration of people’s virtual and real communities.

Additionally, context information, such as location information, gets important, e.g. for spontaneous socialising and collaboration in the “real” world. However, when users participate in such communities, they consciously leave private information traces they are unaware of. The providers of community services need to handle trust and privacy in a manner that meets the participants’ needs as well as complying with regulation. Moreover, in order to finance or co-finance respectively such community services, the infrastructure needs to be opened for marketing activities of sponsors/advertisers. And, as new community-supporting services offered by communication service providers will increasingly become interoperable, this would require that provisions for trust enablement and privacy-respecting identity management also be interoperable between such communication service providers.

A new approach to identity management in community services is needed, in order to meet the needs for:

  • the enablement of trust, by members of the community, in other members and in the service-provision infrastructure,
  • the privacy of community members’ personal information,
  • the control by members of the information they share, and
  • the interoperability of community-supporting services between communication service providers.


This approach must be developed in an open manner, and requires technical advances in order to meet the requirements.