KILT is a decentralized blockchain protocol for issuing self-sovereign decentralized identifiers and verifiable credentials, enabling trust market business models in Web 3, the next generation of the internet. KILT’s mission is to return control over personal data to its owner, restoring privacy to the individual. 

Internet users need to register for the services they use. If those services become successful, they accumulate millions of logins, and often collect data on their users. This leads to three major problems:

  • The data silos are honeypots for hackers and thus a high security risk.
  • The vast amount of users on one service automatically generates a monopoly. Better services coming up have little chance of being recognized, and the monopoly service will not evolve as fast as it could because it does not fear competition.
  • The amount of data collected by only a few services gives these services an unfair advantage in the age of artificial intelligence.
KILT – Figure 1: Many users store their user names and passwords with a centralised service.
KILT – Figure 1: Many users store their user names and passwords with a centralized service.

KILT enables an alternative. As a building block of the next generation of the internet, KILT provides a new mechanism for handling user data, enabling the issuance and holding of credentials digitally. An Attester issues a credential at the request of a user (Claimer). The credential describes certain attributes of the Claimer, which the Attester can determine. The Attester sends the credential to the user who stores it locally. This way the user gains full control over their credentials and thus their data. KILT works like the credential process in the real world, where trusted authorities issue documents which are then owned and controlled by the individual. controlled by the people.

KILT – Figure 2: Each user gets an individual, signed document and puts it in her digital wallet.
KILT – Figure 2: Each user gets an individual, signed document and puts it in their personal digital wallet.

KILT stores a checksum (hash) of this credential on the KILT Blockchain. Blockchain technology enables the user to prove the authenticity of their document to anyone they decide to show it to. KILT is built on privacy by design principles, never storing any personal data on the blockchain. The personal data is in the credential which is under complete control of the user, while the blockchain only stores hash values.

Figure 3: A checksum (hash value) of the signed document is stored on the KILT Blockchain.
Figure 3:  A checksum (hash value) of the signed document is stored on the KILT blockchain.

For example, a user with a verified login or password could use this credential with a service using KILT rather than exposing their actual login or password. If the service they are using (the Verifier) trusts the issuing entity (Attester), it can check the validity of the credential by generating the hash value and checking its existence on the KILT blockchain.

Figure 4: With her document the user registers with a service.
Figure 4: The user can register with a service using their credential.

Just like the real, analogue world, the user can hold many different credentials in their private wallet and use them for different purposes. The user is always under full control of their data and can decide when, why, and to whom they show a credential. Unlike the real world, KILT even allows the user to only show selected sections of their credentials while still allowing the validity of the credential to be checked via the hash value on the blockchain.

KILT enables Data Sovereignty!

KILT – Figure 5: A user applies her document with several services. Those services check the validity of the document on the Blockchain.
KILT – Figure 5: A user can present their document to several services. Those services check the validity of the document on the blockchain..

KILT decouples the verification process from the Attester. The Verifier only needs the KILT blockchain to check the validity of the credential. The Attester is not involved. This feature makes the system extremely scalable and also ensures the privacy of the user. As the trusted attesting entity is not part of the process, it cannot be corrupted and will never know where and for which purpose the credentials were used.