Field Guide

Peer-to-Peer Trust and Identity

Peer-to-Peer Identity When no central identity provider or governance agreement is present, participants assert their own identities and each individual decides who they trust and who they do not.  Each participant is a peer with equal standing and each can communicate with anyone else in the network. Examples:  The most familiar peer-to-peer network is probably […]

Centralized Token Issuance, Distributed Enrollment

A special case peer-to-peer network. Participants want to establish trusted identities that can be used securely for ongoing, high-value communication among organizations.  A trusted, central provider issues identity tokens which are then enrolled independently by each service provider. Service providers are not required to cooperate or accept one another’s enrollments. Examples: The most common examples […]

Pairwise Agreement

Two institutions want to trust identities issued by one another, but there is no outside governance or policy framework for them to do so.  They negotiate a specific agreement that covers only the two of them. Each institution trusts the other to properly manage the identities that it issues. Examples: A pairwise agreement can specify […]

Three Party Model

Three Party Model A trusted third party provides identities to both the requester and service provider. In order to interact with one another, both must agree to trust the same identity provider. Examples: Google, Facebook, American Express, Paypal, Amazon, iTunes App Store   There are two broad types of Three Party Model. If one (or […]