[WG-TFMM] Terminology: trust vs. assurance

Rainer Hörbe rainer at hoerbe.at
Tue May 24 02:40:19 EDT 2011

Am 24.05.2011 um 02:53 schrieb Richard G. WILSHER @Zygma:

>>> [Mark] making assurance synonymous with trust may be confusing to say the least. 

>> [Richard ]To me, trust stems from assurance that things are being done in a recognised way to established levels of performance (rigour, whatever), on an ongoing basis.

> In which case, Mark, how do you think the T(rust)FMM relates to the IA(ssurance)F (and by implication AFs for privacy, attributes, …)?  Note that I had previously argued for an Assurance Framework Meta-Model.


My current understanding in the scope is:

We do not try to define trust as having a rigorously defined meaning in our context, because there are too many conflicting views, and trust is not a useful legal term either. Therefore we confer this definition to the New Oxford American Dictionary.
Assurance is the claim of a party to comply with a set of policies. The assurance from this party is backed by other parties who vouch, audit, arbitrate and enforce contracts and laws. The actions by these 3rd parties could be seen as assurances as well. The sum of these assurances is trust if you see trust as something , or leads to trust.

The difference in our views is that you see the assurance as including all 3rd party assurances, whereas I see assurance as something a single party provides to another (relying) one. My definition came from modeling the TFMM actor model and is not based on any industry terms - so I am open to improvements. But we need to consider that the actor model should make all trust relationships between the parties explicit and need some term for this.

. Rainer

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