Verifiable Credentials (VCs) and SSI
Often called VC, we could say that these are machine-readable documents, where the data that can be shared and verified by others is written and stored to.
Now from the W3C specification on what is a Verifiable Credential:
A credential is a set of one or more claims made by the same entity. Credentials might also include an identifier and metadata to describe properties of the credential, such as the issuer, the expiry date and time, a representative image, a public key to use for verification purposes, the revocation mechanism, and so on. The metadata might be signed by the issuer. A verifiable credential is a set of tamper-evident claims and metadata that cryptographically prove who issued it.
And the visual representation of a VC lifecycle:
An abstract representation of a VC is the following:
More details at our Verifiable Credentials article.