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Linden Lab Introduces Identity Verification to Second Life

2007-08-29 00:00:00 UTC

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Linden Lab Introduces Identity Verification to Second Life

Voluntary System Will Allow Verification For Enhanced Community Interaction

San Francisco, CA — August 29, 2007 — Linden Lab®, the developer of the 3D virtual world Second Life®, today unveiled a new Identity Verification (IDV) system for its Residents. The voluntary system will provide an additional layer of trust for Residents and businesses, giving them new tools to determine how they interact with the Second Life community and how the content they create is accessed.

The introduction of IDV will also help ensure that minors do not gain access to restricted content within Second Life, which is intended for users aged 18 or over. Access to Second Life content flagged as 'Restricted' will be available only to those whose age has been verified as being over 18.

Verification technology and data services provider, Aristotle, will provide its widely used Integrity Identity verification technology, which launches in Linden Lab's beta today, before a full rollout to all Second Life Residents.

Identify verification is voluntary, but will be required of any Resident wishing to access clearly marked 'Restricted' regions within Second Life. The system requires users to enter specific identifying information, for example, a driver's license number, passport or national ID card number, or the last four digits of a social security number. This is then cross-checked against pre-existing databases of public record, to verify relevant aspects of a person's identity.

This data will not be stored with either Linden Lab, or Integrity, but will be used simply to verify age and other identifying factors. The verification process will take place in the 'my account' section of the Second Life Website, with the overall process lasting less than two minutes.

Second Life users who prefer to forego identity verification are welcome to do so, and may continue to use the Second Life service, although their access to areas marked as 'Restricted' will be prohibited.

"This is an important and necessary step in the development of Second Life," said Robin Harper, vice president of marketing and community development at Linden Lab. "Anonymity has long been both a benefit and a challenge for online communities: a benefit because it offers opportunities to reinvent yourself; a challenge when it comes to the creation of trusting relationships. With the option to verify aspects of their Real Life identity, such as age and name, Second Life Residents can begin to build trust and safety systems inside the virtual world and their virtual community."

For more information, please visit the official Second Life blog.

About Second Life and Linden Lab

Second Life is a 3D online world with a rapidly growing population from 100 countries around the globe, in which the Residents themselves create and build the world, which includes homes, vehicles, nightclubs, stores, landscapes and clothing. The Second Life Grid is a sophisticated development platform created by Linden Lab, a company founded in 1999 by Philip Rosedale, to create a revolutionary new form of shared 3D experience. The former CTO of RealNetworks, Rosedale pioneered the development of many of today's streaming media technologies, including RealVideo. In April 2003, noted software pioneer Mitch Kapor, founder of Lotus Development Corporation, was named Chairman. Based in San Francisco, Linden Lab employs a senior team bringing together deep expertise in physics, 3D graphics and networking. Note to editors: Second Life® and Linden Lab® are registered trademarks of Linden Research, Inc.

About Aristotle

Aristotle is a global software and data services firm dedicated to facilitating communication between citizens and the companies, non-profits, elected representatives and government agencies with whom they chose to do business. Today, Aristotle's IntegritySM is the most widely accepted identity and age verification service deployed for instantly verifying government-issued ID's for citizens of 152 nations. The service operates on a variety of platforms, including Internet, interactive voice response, mobile and handheld devices.

IntegritySM helps responsible merchants mitigate the risk of identity fraud online, at events and at point of sale. Deployments include the major motion picture studios, wineries, brewers and distillers, tobacco and financial services companies, event management and advertising agencies, transportation security and government agencies.

Aristotle is headquartered in Washington, D.C. with offices in Atlanta, Toronto, San Francisco and London. More information is available at