OneID secures $7M for universal sign-in across the Web

Krystal Peak · April 11, 2012 · Short URL:

With Series-A funding from Khosla & North Bridge, OneID wants to replace usernames, passwords


In you want to maintain any amount of online security across your multiple online accounts, you would need the memory of a Rolodex to keep all the characters and combinations in order. This is why many people opt for the unsafe route of using their email username and password for everything -- terrible idea. But one Bay Area startup is trying to provide the simplicity of creating single ID without the security of encrypted passwords. 

When users fall back on using the same username and passwords, they become open for multiple types of cyber attacks where thousands of digital identities are scanned and used across the Web to see if any of those identities hit on other websites. And, for online businesses, with more consumers shopping online, the IT costs associated with authentication and financial transactions such as lost password recovery, liability from credit card theft and chargebacks have continued to skyrocket, putting additional pressure on online merchants.

OneID, a San Jose-based startup, is trying to rethink the entire username/password paradigm and replace it with a system that centers around public key cryptography to establish user identities across PCs, smartphones, tablets, and other devices -- and this concept just landed some funding from Khosla Ventures. OneID announced Wednesday that it raised $7 million in its Series-A round of financing, led by Khosla, with participation from Noth Bridge Venture Partners.

Think about Facebook Connect as a similar tool, where one verified method can help you auto-sign in around the Web. Now, in order for this to work, many people and companies would all have to be on board or else big firms wouldn't see the value in adding the technology to their websites and as an alternative to conventional logging-in procedures.

The goal of this OneID system is to reduce the time, trouble and fraud inherent to authentication is in most every digital financial transaction. 

OneID is currently live on over 1,000 sites (that reach over 100 million users), and if the company can add one or two more digits to the end of that number then there could be enough traction for you to see OneID log-in options across the Web.

And the new influx of funding is aimed to help OneID will focus on bringing the its service to market for use by identity providers, ecommerce businesses, enterprises, governments and individuals.

With this funding announcement, the company also appointed Alex Doll, former executive at PGP Corp., as CEO to guide the company’s growth. Doll had previous success scaling PGP Corp. from inception to global industry leader in trusted data protection. OneID's founder, Steve Kirsch, will move into the role of CTO, focusing on the development of the OneID service. And Shirish Sathaye, general partner at Khosla Ventures and Jonathan Heiliger have joined the OneID board of directors.


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