Of the 7+ billion people on Earth, over 1.1 billion still lack any form of legal identity, 1.5 billion cannot prove their identity, close to 1.7 billion are without a bank account, and 5 billion do not have a smartphone or access to digital wallets. Identity verification is an obstacle to growth in emerging markets as it prevents people from accessing formal economic services, such as banking, insurance, and lending. Ultimately, this significantly limits the number of people who can access the economy, and thereby stalls economic development at the institutional level. As the mainstream economy continues to digitize, it will not just be the ‘unbanked’ and ‘unverified’ that struggle to join economic systems. A device-free, universally accessible, digital identity provides the opportunity for the entire world to join the global economy.