Blog: Alice proves to Bob that she has graduated with diploma

Higher Education Institutes (HEI) and their Student Information Systems (SIS) have been operating in silos as far as the diplomas issuing and verification is concerned. This has been attributed mostly to privacy and security requirements but also to the lack of appropriate protocols and APIs that would foster the semantic and technical interoperability between the SIS.


Nowadays, the problem that we would like to solve in plain words, is how Alice can prove to Bob in a verifiable way and with out leaking information to anyone else, that she has indeed a diploma and reveal to him only the intended level of details of her diploma in the online paperless world. 

The last few years lots of developments have been made in this area in terms of security, but also in terms of semantic and technical interoperability among HEIs in EU (https://emrex.eu). What PRIViLEDGE brings into this picture is new ideas that will demonstrate how DLTs (aka blockchain technologies) can further enhance the privacy-preserving properties of the relevant implementations and eliminate debatable design assumptions such as the requirement for trusted third parties. This now blends very well with initiatives in Greek HEIs that just recently resulted in the implementation of the eDiplomas.gr (https://ediplomas.gr). 

While eDiplomas is currently built around conventional cryptographic technologies to deliver today a production ready solution, it is modular enough to provide the platform where PRIViLEDGE can apply and benchmark the UC3 (diploma record ledger) enhancements.

In this framework, an end-to-end protocol that leverages innovative DLTs and new cryptographic primitives, is PRIViLEDGE’s primary goal and it’s on the way. Along with that there are additional thoughts to be implemented such as:

a) a permissioned yet public blockchain, to host the public registry of the diplomas templates, ie the part of diploma that does not include PII or issuing dates,

b) a permissioned private blockchain, supplementary subsystem, to provide the accountability and auditability of the messages exchanged through eDiplomas in a privacy preserving way as commonly required by the legislation.


Further reading if you are interested in related projects: https://ec.europa.eu/cefdigital/wiki/display/CEFDIGITAL/EBSI 


Written by Georgios Anastasiou, GUNet
Picture by Pixabay