[Security] GSoC proposal: Identity-based end-to-end encryption for XMPP

David Núñez dnunez at lcc.uma.es
Wed Mar 16 02:50:12 CST 2011


Hi Hannes,

thank you for the comments. With respect to the requirements for end-to-end encryption, I think they are very well explained in this draft:

"Requirements for End-to-End Encryption in the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP)". http://xmpp.org/internet-drafts/draft-ietf-xmpp-e2e-requirements-01.html

I didn't want to go to the requirements level of the proposal until I knew that someone on the XSF is interested. My original intention was to ask you all (the XMPP community) before writing a serious proposal. However, as you pointed, in order to make an appropriate proposal, the requirements have to be studied thoroughly. And, of course, also a mentor and the support from the XSF are needed :)

Best regards,
David.


El 16/03/2011, a las 07:39, Hannes Tschofenig escribió:

> Hi Brian, 
> 
> I am not sure I fully understand the process & background here but David had asked for comments on an idea he had.
> 
> I was in the assumption that he wanted to get feedback from others on the usage of IBE for e2e security. 
> 
> Having worked with researchers a lot it is not uncommon to look at all the different solution mechanisms out there and to apply them. 
> Regardless which communication protocol you look at you will for sure see proposals that use CGAs, IBE, apply security at all layers, etc. 
> 
> My believe is that it helps to determine what the problem actually is, and figure out what requirements for the specific problem arise. 
> Not having seen any problem analysis nor requirements list (yet) I was only able to share my limited view of what I would do. 
> 
> Ciao
> Hannes
> 
> PS: Regarding the analysis of existing mechanisms and some requirements other folks had looked at you might want to read through: 
> http://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc5479
> 
> On Mar 16, 2011, at 1:17 AM, Brian Spector wrote:
> 
>> This ignorance on this board is truly stunning.  It's actually hard to
>> argue with the logic presented here.
>> 
>>>> The primary advantage of an IBE system is that you can encrypt to
>>>> people whose credentials you don't have (and may not even have any
>>>> yet). However, since this is a real-time exchange, that benefit does
>>>> not applyhere.
>> 
>> Anyone with a cursory knowledge of crypto knows the issues in scaling PKI
>> are immense.
>> Identity based cryptosystems come in all shapes and sizes, not just
>> identity based encryption, but identity based key agreements, hierarchical
>> key systems, etc.
>> And there are PLENTY of well-known IBCs that are IPR free  (well, at least
>> to anyone who isn't lazy enough to look beyond Boneh-Franklin).
>> 
>> Further, I think there are some people on this list that are also on the
>> IETF draft bodies, and they know the proposals coming down the river, and
>> WHY they are coming down the river, and no one has spoken up yet for this
>> guy and his idea.  If that's the case, that's shameful.
>> 
>> David, it's a great idea, it's important, and I'll find a way to rustle up
>> the resources to sponsor you.
>> 
>> I think I can relegate this board to a Google archive rather than have it
>> pollute my inbox anymore.
>> 
>> FAIL.
>> 
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: security-bounces at xmpp.org [mailto:security-bounces at xmpp.org] On
>> Behalf Of Eric Rescorla
>> Sent: 15 March 2011 15:32
>> To: XMPP Security
>> Subject: Re: [Security] GSoC proposal: Identity-based end-to-end
>> encryption for XMPP
>> 
>> On Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 8:20 AM, David Núñez <dnunez at lcc.uma.es> wrote:
>>> The idea is to use the XMPP servers as Key Generation Centers (KGC),
>> since they already provide procedures for user authentication. Thus, the
>> project would have to develop the server components required to issue
>> private keys to users, among others. I think that the fact that the JID of
>> the user you want to securely communicate could act as a public key is
>> interesting to the XMPP protocol.
>> 
>> Yes, this does not add any value over a standard PKI system.
>> 
>> -Ekr
>> 
>>> However, I am aware that there have been several responses to my
>> proposal, and it seems that it is not very interesting to XMPP. I would
>> like to thank you for your thoughtful insights. As one of you suggested in
>> a previous response, I will study in more depth the current problems in
>> end-to-end communication in XMPP and try to propose something else. I was
>> hoping to participate in this Google Summer of Code edition. Any ideas
>> that could be arranged as a proposal?
>>> 
>>> Best regards,
>>> David.
>>> 
>>> El 15/03/2011, a las 15:47, Eric Rescorla escribió:
>>> 
>>>> On Tue, Mar 15, 2011 at 7:14 AM, David Núñez <dnunez at lcc.uma.es> wrote:
>>>>> Thank you for your response. Respect to your first point, one
>> advantage of the proposed scheme is that it is an alternative to digital
>> certificates and its associated distribution infrastructure, as it relies
>> on the identity of the users as public keys.
>>>> 
>>>> I don't know what this means. An IBE system requires a central key
>>>> generation server which needs to verify users identities and only
>>>> issue keys when appropriate. The processing done by the KGS looks
>>>> very much like that done by a CA.
>>>> 
>>>> The primary advantage of an IBE system is that you can encrypt to
>>>> people whose credentials you don't have (and may not even have any
>>>> yet). However, since this is a real-time exchange, that benefit does
>>>> not applyhere.
>>>> 
>>>> -Ekr
>>> 
>>> 
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