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Frequently Asked Questions

General

What's a digital identity?


All of us have an identity associated with us composed of different attributes such as our name, age, date of birth and so on. And to prove our identity we possess some form of a proof, be it a government issued identity card, driver's license, voter card or a passport. We share these with different people throughout our life, with schools, offices, hospitals etc. Similar to a physical identity, we have digital identity in the digital realm. A digital identity is made up of various digital attributes and credentials, related to our identity in the real world. Identity documents, usernames, passwords are all part of our digital identity. As the world switches to digital identity, it has become increasingly important to ensure we have reliable means to prove our legal identity online in a safe and secure manner.




What’s self-sovereign identity (SSI)?


Self-sovereign identity (SSI) is an approach to digital identity that gives the user the power to hold and control their identity independent of any authority or institution. This approach puts the user at the center of all processes and enables the user to share only what is relevant, check who has permissions to use their data and revoke these permissions anytime. Moreover, the user can share verified data, selectively disclose information and even prove facts about themselves without disclosing any information. To learn more about SSI and its principles, .... check this.




What are we working on currently?


Currently we are working on a suite of products to build an SSI based ecosystem focused on addressing the socioeconomic needs and challenges within the Indian ecosystem. Our offerings would include consultancy and enterprise product offerings to instantiate the ecosystem for various government and corporate domains. The reader is requested to stay tuned to this website for future updates!





About CRUBN

What is CRUBN?


Incubated at IIT Kanpur, CRUBN was started by the researchers, engineers, and leaders who created, innovated, and adopted cutting edge blockchain technology under the aegis of the National Blockchain Project, IIT Kanpur. CRUBN provides state-of-the-art tools and technologies exclusively designed and adapted for Indian e-governance scenarios. For more details, check out https://crubn.com





Technical

What is the technology behind this idea?


The SSI ecosystem is based on distributed ledger and protocols enabled by Hyperledger Indy. It involves a decentralized storage - an Identity specialized blockchain, tools and libraries to build client-side and server-side software, and well documented protocols to perform identity related transactions.




Why is blockchain used?


A blockchain is simply a network of connected computers, all keeping the copy of all the records in a ledger. Records are immutable and once a record has been accepted in the blockchain network, it is set in stone forever. Blockchain thus enables decentralized trust, where no malicious party can tamper with the data. In our case, blockchain is used to record information about the trusted parties such as issuers like government agencies, information about types of credential like passport or driving license, and some other cryptographic data related to these. The blockchain, thus, serves as a single source of truth about verifiable credentials and their issuers.




What is a verifiable credential?


Verifiable credential can be thought of as an unforgeable version of a paper credential. The SSI is possible because of the Verifiable Credential standard that the World Wide Web Consortium is working on. Such a credential basically contains facts about an entity such as name or address, along with digital signature (or something similar) which can be used to directly verify such facts. This verifiability is enabled by use of decentralized root of trust on an Identity blockchain. Once a verifiable credential has been issued by a trusted issuer, anyone can verify it without contacting the issuer, by referring to the issuer information present in the blockchain.




Is any personal data stored on the blockchain?


No, personal data is not stored on the blockchain. All personal data is stored locally on the user’s device. Only information to prove authenticity of the private data goes on the blockchain, and not data that can be used to trace back to your real identity.