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Background

Web users often need to prove specific attributes about themselves, such as age, nationality, or membership. There is a growing need for those users to verify those attributes about themselves without risking their privacy or personal data.
This document introduces zPass, a solution that employs Aleo, the zero-knowledge developer platform and blockchain, and its domain-specific language, Leo, to generate programs that better protect privacy in identity verification.
This protocol transforms how credentials are issued, verified, and used. It places power in the hands of the users while ensuring privacy and eliminating the challenge of compliance for platforms and developers.

The central challenge

Verifying identity attributes like age and nationality in the digital realm poses two main challenges: the need to minimize personal data disclosure and remain compliant with increasingly stringent data protection regulations.

Regulatory landscape

Regulatory frameworks such as GDPR and CCPA have raised the bar for data privacy and security, making it imperative for identity management solutions to align with legal requirements (non-compliance risks significant financial and reputational damage).

Limitations of existing solutions

Current centralized identity systems face a trade-off between security and privacy, often collecting more data than is actually needed for verification. While sometimes compliant with regulations, they become prime targets for data breaches and social engineering attacks, undermining user privacy and regulatory adherence. On the other hand, existing decentralized solutions struggle with privacy and efficiency due to the public nature of transparent on-chain execution.

A compliant, secure alternative

Built on the Aleo blockchain, zPass is designed to utilize zero-knowledge cryptography as a flexible solution in an evolving regulatory environment. The system aims to provide verification assurance with minimized data exposure, making it compatible with current and anticipated regulatory guidelines.