Controversial: The Future is Data Integrity, Not Confidentiality

Kieren McCarthy | The Register | September 24, 2015

President of Estonia makes interesting point at IT powwow

The key to the digital future is about data integrity, not data confidentiality. So says Toomas Hendrik Ilves, President of Estonia, who flew into San Francisco Thursday morning to address an internet summit hosted by CloudFlare."I have AB blood," he said by way of example. "I don't particularly care that people know that. But if somehow that information was changed, well then I could end up dead."

Estonia has become somewhat of a digital poster child in recent years thanks to its embrace of internet technology, including the creation of an "e-resident" system where anyone can become a digital resident of the small country, open a bank account and sign legal documents electronically. That drive has in large part come from Ilves himself, who talked briefly about how he learned to code while at university. "I had a system with 8K of memory," he recalled, "which I guess is the size of an empty email."

Ilves spoke knowledgeably about a whole range of tech issues, something that an earlier panel at the summit noted was a rare occurrence: being a politician and being tech-savvy tend to be mutually exclusive. Estonia has introduced a unique system where the government servers are all connected to one another and every citizen is provided with a chipped card that allows them to access the network...