Visit any website today and you’ll likely be accosted from the front and mugged from the back.
The first thing you’ll see, aside from the website’s masthead, is ubiquitous and maddening cookie declaration asking you whether you object if the website sells your data. The overt mugging.
Meanwhile, third party data siphoned from your behavior on other sites catalog your preferences, your movements, and your purchases. This information is traded on exchanges around the world. The covert pilfering.
This is my web experience. By the way, I helped create it. I was part of a product team that built infrastructure to monetize users' movements. And I see now it won’t last.
Recently I visited a website where I spent a significant sum, but the website never knew who I was. No cookies, no log-in, no username, no password.
Each subsequent time I visit the website, the application treats me as if it’s the first time we’ve met. It’s a goldfish - its memory lasts less than five seconds. Ted Lasso would approve.
Most web3 apps work this way. In my case, the app is Raydium, a place to buy and sell crypto. When I arrive, I can browse it freely, anonymously.
When I want to transact, I connect to the app with a Chrome extension, a wallet. The wallet secures my identity, my data, and my money. When I consent, my wallet submits an ID to Radium which suffices to move money around securely. When I leave the webpage, I disappear into the good night, at least as far as Raydium is concerned.
Technically, Radium is a dApp (distributed app), but that moniker will soon fade away, just the same as portal and webapp have dissipated in the fullness of time, replaced by the simpler site or app. Many web3 or dApps are built this way.
Wallet-based authentication will dominate in the next decade because it puts the user in control, where we want to be. The wallet replaces the username, the password, and the cookie.
As the CEO of one of the largest internet companies in the world used to say: focus on the user, and all else will follow. Web3 authentication is simpler. And everyone who has deployed security tools in the past will tell you, simplicity wins every time. Users prefer it.