[Graphics by Song Ji-yoon]
South Korea’s tech giants and financial firms are vying fiercely for a new market in digital ID after a longstanding monopoly has ended.
The Electronic Signature Act passed the National Assembly last week, ending a 21-year monopoly and liberalizing the market to make free choice over ID verification systems.
Pass, an authentication service launched by the country’s three major wireless carriers and fintech firm Aton, has emerged as the strongest player as it can pull in 60 million-wide smartphone users.
Another major competitors include KakaoPay, the mobile payment service of Kakao that operates the nation’s leading messenger Kakao Talk with 45 million users, and top peer-to-peer payment app Toss with more than 10 million users. Tech giant Naver is also jumping on the bandwagon.
The country’s digital authentication market is currently worth 70 billion won ($56.4 million), but there is an enormous growth potential on rapidly increasing online transactions, e-commerce and digitalization of various services.
Companies are rushing into the market not only to raise more profits from taking fees but also expand business model by collaborating with data, blockchain and cybersecurity industries. The global multi-factor authentication market is now worth 6 trillion won and expected to grow to 25 trillion won by 2025.
By Shin Chan-ok and Choi Mira
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]