The Trust Triangle
Understanding Verifiable Credentials Through Real-world Scenarios


3 min read

The everyday reality

When a traffic policeman stops me and asks for my license (which btw happened very recently) I just show him my DL card, he looks at it and is convinced that I have a valid driving license.

Lets see what just happened:

  1. There is no third party involved in this brief exchange between the two of us
  2. The policeman is convinced of the credentials I presented because of the form/format of the credential itself
  3. By looking at the policeman, I am convinced that it was not some random person that I was sharing my credentials with.
  4. I shared my credentials and took it back from him. My credentials are with me.

What if trust is questioned?

Now let's say I present a photocopy of my DL card (a common practice years ago). The policeman would likely issue me a ticket. Why? Because he lacks trust in the source of the credential I presented.

In the digital realm

About 25-30 years ago a similar situation arose in the digital world. A website could convince a browser of its identify and the browser (or the person using the browser) could convince the website of his/her identity. Am sure you all know the details very well. My identity here as what I know (password for example). In short am sharing a very small part of my identity.

But my identity is lot more than just what I know. My identity could be "what I have", "what I am" and more.

In the digital world can I share my identity with a trusted peer ?

The trust Triangle

Let us see how verifiable credentials can help us. In this model, there are three vertices of trust: the issuer, the verifier, and the holder. In our traffic stop example:

  • The issuer is the Department of Motor Vehicles that issued the DL card.
  • The verifier is the traffic policeman who inspects it.
  • The holder is me, the individual presenting the credential.

Built on blockchain technology, it enables the secure and efficient issuance and verification of digital credentials. When I use LYIK, my identity—validated by a trusted issuing authority—is securely encapsulated in a digital format. The verifier (akin to the traffic cop) can then rely on the robustness of blockchain technology to ensure the credential's authenticity, while I remain in full control of my digital identity.

The Trust Triangle ensures a self-contained, three-way assurance model that eliminates the need for external validation. Just as the traffic policeman didn't need to call in a third-party to verify my license, digital verifiers won't need additional layers to trust the credentials issued via LYIK


As we navigate an increasingly digital world, it's astonishing to consider how the age-old issue of trust is being redefined. Verifiable credentials technology is nothing short of revolutionary in this context. Just like the traffic policeman didn't need a third party to verify my physical license, imagine a world where our digital selves are just as easily—and securely—verified. The Trust Triangle serves as a paradigm shift, creating a self-contained ecosystem of trust without the need for middlemen or cumbersome validation processes.