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Christopher Allen

Christopher is an entrepreneur and technologist who specializes in internet & blockchain security, digital identity, collaboration, and trust. He is a pioneer in internet security and co-author of the IETF TLS internet standard that is now at the heart of secure commerce on the World Wide Web. His broad experience includes work as: Principal Architect at Blockstream, leading blockchain standards efforts; VP of Developer Relations at Blackphone, building a privacy-focused cellphone; and CTO of cryptographic security giant Certicom in the early 00s, before it sold to Blackberry.

Today, he is Founder and Executive Director of Blockchain Commons, focused on cryptographic security and open & interoperable, secure & compassionate infrastructure for the internet, and author of the book "#SmartCustody: The use of advanced cryptographic tools to improve the care, maintenance, control, and protection of digital assets”. Christopher also leads efforts in the W3C toward Verifiable Credentials and Decentralized Identifiers as international standards; he is co-author of the W3C DID standard, invited expert to the W3C VC standard, and former co-chair of the W3C Credentials CG.

Christopher is also a digital civil-liberty & human-rights privacy advisor. He was part of the team that led the first UN summit on Digital Identity & Human Rights #ID2020 in 2016, There he first offered the term “Self-Sovereign Identity” as the name for a new manifesto of 10 foundational principles for digital identity. In 2019 he was cited as a "Top 100 Influencers in Identity". Since 2019 he has helped as an advisor to the Wyoming legislature, including drafting new laws that established a legal definition for Digital Identity under Agency Law, enabling legislation for registering and domiciling DAOs, and laws supporting the regulation of digital assets and custody.