Credential revocation is managed with on-chain revocation registries. To revoke a credential, its id (or hash of its id) must be added to the credential. It is advised to have one revocation registry per credential type. Each registry has a unique id and an associated policy. The policy determines who can update the revocation registry.

The same revocation registry should be reused for thousands of credentials. It speeds up issuance and increases privacy.

Revocation registry is shared between all the schemas of the same organisation profile.

W3C Status List 2021

Is a default trust registry in Certs for non-anonymous credentials. It is the best choice for most users of non-anonymous credentials, but requires disclosure of revocation id, which identifies which credential is being revoked. This can be avoided by using Dock anonymous credentials, where you prove that the revocation id is not in "the list" (accumulator) without disclosing the id itself.

This registry is good for interoperability, because it follows the W3C standard.

It tracks all revocation entries in a single data type.

The blockchain transaction to revoke multiple credentials at once is less expensive than the Dock Revocation Registry.

Supports revocation and suspension flags, which allows specifying whether an id once added to the registry can be removed (leading to undoing the revocation) or not.

Dock Revocation Registry

Original approach to revocation for non-anonymous credentials that is implemented with a private status list. It is the preferred approach only in specific scenarios.

Dock Revocation registry blockchain transactions have a different cost profile than with W3C Status List 2021, it consumes more space on the ledger for multiple entries, so it is more expensive when revoking in batches, but it is less expensive for a single entry, when revoking a single credential at one time.

Requires disclosure of revocation id that wouldn't otherwise be disclosed with Dock anonymous credentials.

The registry has an "add-only" flag specifying whether an id once added to the registry can be removed (leading to undoing the revocation) or not.

For now, only one policy is supported which is that each registry is owned by a single DID. Also, neither the policy nor the "add-only" flag can be updated post the creation of the registry for now.

Anonymous Credential Revocation

We use VB and KB universal types of accumulators for anonymous credential revocation. They have different properties, but both are bilinear map pairing based accumulators.

Key terms

  • Credential identifier

  • Witness - additional information provided to the credential holder.The witness is issued to the Holder during the initial issuance process and needs to be re-issued or updated after each revocation process.

  • Accumulator - one-way function that sums a large set of items into a single accumulator value. The membership of an included item can be proved using the accumulator, the item itself, and a witness. Read more

  • Update transactions - contain the additions, removals and witness update polynomial for the update.

Anonymous revocation process

  • Issuer uses the credential identifier of an issued credential to generate an accumulator that gets stored on the blockchain.

  • Issuer provides the holder with the credential and the witness.

  • During revocation, Issuer puts an update transaction on the blockchain that updates the accumulator and that the holder can use to update their witness. The most recent accumulator is present in the blockchain state and updates are stored in β€œcalldata” which can be fetched with blockchain events.

  • Holder uses the witness, accumulator, and the updates to generate an updated witness which is then used to create the proof of non-revocation by showing that their credential identifier is included in the accumulator.

Additional resources

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