W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-credentials@w3.org > March 2021

Re: The SSI protocols challenge [Was]: W3C DID Core 1.0 enters Candidate Recommendation stage

From: Jeremy Townson <jeremy.townson@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 22 Mar 2021 10:33:49 +0000
Message-ID: <CAAic94Fu9DLRyQP-BHYiL+Nb-a9LJ7=Ra5T76fkjWGwHJmpYTA@mail.gmail.com>
To: David Chadwick <D.W.Chadwick@kent.ac.uk>
Cc: Steve Capell <steve.capell@gmail.com>, "W3C Credentials CG (Public List)" <public-credentials@w3.org>
To jump in with somewhat a change of subject, there is a practical issue
with SSI protocols here, in relation to pairwise DIDs, that was poorly
dealt with when I started looking at SSI and might still be. Plus, it does
couple DIDs and VCs in a de facto way.

To explain: much blurb on SSI skims over how essential to many data
processing tasks it is that you *can* correlate reliably. i.e. given two
VCs, how can I determine, securely, that they relate to the same person?
The statement that 'one cannot tell, by design' is too lofty. Correlation
using other identity attributes -- name, dob, etc -- is unreliable for
computers. The alternative, that the presenter provides two VCs, containing
pairwize DIDs along with additional self-issued credentials proving
ownership of both the primary credentials, is quite technical to implement.
I've seen several good developer effectively shun SSI, pairwise DIDs rather
than face this challenge. This was not they were bad developer so much as,
by the time that the stories to implement the aforementioned data
processing tasks reached them, such an architectural change was out of
their scope. Persistent identifiers of some kind then provide an escape
route.

In short, there seems to be a greater need for explanations, recipes and
tooling to support the binding of VCs (when the presenter wants that to
happen). This will prevent the sort of 'backdoor centralization' that will
arise from persistent dids.

Self-issued credentials that prove DID ownership are credentials, but they
are credentials that relate to DIDs. There is a chance therefore that this
topic could fall into no-mans land.

Regards,
Jeremy

On Mon, 22 Mar 2021 at 09:56, David Chadwick <D.W.Chadwick@kent.ac.uk>
wrote:

> Hi Steve
>
> I take "represent" to mean the issuer of the VC and not the phone app.
> Looking up the definition of represent we have "to speak for", "to stand
> for", "to denote", which is what the issuer is doing when it issues a VC to
> a holder. "DVLA says that I can drive a car".
>
> So my point was that today, all issuers represent the subject by issuing
> VCs, and all issuers today use centralised systems. So today, all VC
> systems rely on centralised systems.
>
> Whilst I take Drummond's point that SSI might not *require* centralised
> systems, I have yet to see a workable viable SSI system that does *rely*
> on them. (Cars do not require tarmaced roads, but they all rely on them,
> and would be much worse off without them)
>
> Kind regards
>
> David
> On 21/03/2021 21:50, Steve Capell wrote:
>
> Hi David
>
> There will always be issuers of credentials that are the natural authority
> for a think and will naturally (legally obliged actually) to keep records
> about the thing they do
> - your DVLA issues drivers licenses and it would be nice to issue them as
> VCs so that holders can selectively disclose
> - Oxford University issues degree certificates and certainly keeps records
> of their alumni
> - and so on ..
> It would be odd to suggest that, to comply with SSI, these organisations
> should dispose of their records
>
> And, at least with my amateur reading of that principle “ An SSI
> ecosystem shall not require reliance on a centralized system to represent,
> control, or verify an entity’s digital identity data.”
> - represent : isn’t that the users phone app (or even PDF with QR)
> - control : the users digital wallet
> - verify : at the holders discretion via a VP and unknown to the issuer
>
> So - where is the conflict with the legal requirement for issuers to keep
> records ?
>
> Steven Capell
> Mob: 0410 437854
>
> On 21 Mar 2021, at 10:37 pm, David Chadwick <D.W.Chadwick@kent.ac.uk>
> <D.W.Chadwick@kent.ac.uk> wrote:
>
> 
>
> Hi Steve
>
> I think you will have a hard time convincing anyone of the principles of
> SSI when Sovrin's third principle states
>
> 3. An SSI ecosystem shall not require reliance on a centralized system to
> represent, control, or verify an entity’s digital identity data.
>
> This is clearly impossible, since every VC Issuer that I know has a
> centralised system in which they store, manage and update the user's PII
> from which they issue their VCs.
>
> Kind regards
>
> David
>
>
> On 20/03/2021 20:25, Steve Capell wrote:
>
> Hi Michael
>
> As a contractor to Australian government I deal with policy makers almost
> every day and so I understand both the difficulty and the necessity of
> conveying these concepts to non technical audiences.
>
> As a sufficiently technical reader, I liked your article. It’s the first
> time I’ve seen that meta-model of the identity domain and, for me, it was
> very helpful.
>
> However, sadly, I don’t think it will help the policy maker that is not
> used to reading meta models. I usually have more success with storyboards
> that contrast two architectures with real examples. Policy makers don’t
> need to “understand the architecture”.  They need to be able to
> conceptualise how it works through examples to that they can understand the
> policy impacts and opportunities.
>
> I also need to convey these ideas - both to AU and UN sometime over the
> next month or so. I’ll need to test my communication materials on non
> technical people to ensure the message has worked - and also on expert SSI
> community members to ensure that the message is right. For that latter
> concern, please let me know if anyone in this group is willing to be a
> sounding board
>
> Kind regards
>
> Steven Capell
> Mob: 0410 437854
>
> On 21 Mar 2021, at 4:47 am, Michael Herman (Trusted Digital Web)
> <mwherman@parallelspace.net> <mwherman@parallelspace.net> wrote:
>
> 
>
> RE: In prep calls for the panel and other mentions of our work, the
> “Self-Sovereign Identity” concept is treated as controversial. In a recent
> major webinar about mandated protocols by the US regulators themselves,
> they referred to “Distributed Identity”.
>
>
>
> I’m trying to address the same issue wrt what is “Self-Sovereign Identity”
> / “SSI” at its very core.
>
>
>
> Check out: https://hyperonomy.com/2021/02/01/ssi-unconscious-contractions/
>
>
>
> I’m looking for additional people who share a similar perspective.
>
>
>
> Best regards,
>
> Michael
>
>
>
> *From:* Adrian Gropper <agropper@healthurl.com> <agropper@healthurl.com>
> *Sent:* March 20, 2021 8:58 AM
> *To:* Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com> <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
> *Cc:* W3C Credentials CG <public-credentials@w3.org>
> <public-credentials@w3.org>
> *Subject:* The SSI protocols challenge [Was]: W3C DID Core 1.0 enters
> Candidate Recommendation stage
>
>
>
> It is indeed a big deal and cause for celebration.
>
>
>
> From my perspective the next challenge is to get the protocols right from
> a human-centered and community perspective.
>
>
>
> For an example of that challenge, on March 30 I’m on a Digital Credentials
> panel at the ONC (US Federal healthcare regulator) Annual Meeting. In prep
> calls for the panel and other mentions of our work, the “Self Sovereign
> Identity” concept is treated as controversial. In a recent major webinar
> about mandated protocols by the US regulators themselves, they referred to
> “Distributed Identity” :-?
>
>
>
> Let us celebrate and consider the Fun times ahead....
>
>
>
> Adrian
>
>
>
> On Sat, Mar 20, 2021 at 10:16 AM Manu Sporny <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>
> wrote:
>
> Hi all,
>
> Decentralized Identifiers (DIDs) v1.0 has reached the Candidate
> Recommendation
> stage at W3C. The current specification can be found here:
>
> https://www.w3.org/TR/2021/CR-did-core-20210318/
>
> This is a major milestone in the W3C global standards process. It marks the
> start of a period of 1-4 months where the official W3C Working Group has
> communicated that it is done with all features in the specification.
>
> The W3C DID WG has also communicated that the specification is stable
> enough
> to collect implementation experience from the global implementer community.
> Once the WG collects enough implementation experience, it may then make
> final
> adjustments before publishing the v1.0 global standard, which is expected
> at
> the end of September 2021.
>
> I have attached an image with an (unofficial) graphical depiction of the
> DID
> standards history and expected future timeline.
>
> Congratulations to everyone that contributed to get us to this point; this
> is
> a big deal and cause for celebration. :)
>
> -- manu
>
> --
> Manu Sporny - https://www.linkedin.com/in/manusporny/
> Founder/CEO - Digital Bazaar, Inc.
> blog: Veres One Decentralized Identifier Blockchain Launches
> https://tinyurl.com/veres-one-launches
>
>
Received on Monday, 22 March 2021 10:34:14 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Monday, 22 March 2021 10:34:15 UTC