Difference between revisions of "Session:Namecoin as a Decentralized Alternative to Certificate Authorities for TLS"

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Certificate authorities (CA's) pose a serious threat to the TLS ecosystem.  Unfortunately, the various proposed solutions (e.g. Convergence, DANE, HPKP, CAA, and CT) do not solve the underlying problem: the existence of trusted parties in the process of converting a domain name to a certificate acceptance policy.  While it may be an improvement to reshuffle the trusted parties to have more trust agility (Convergence), a smaller set of fully trusted parties (DANE), a more limited window of opportunity for attackers (HPKP and CT) or more accountability after-the-fact (HPKP, CAA, and CT), we think it's time to solve the underlying problem.  Namecoin introduces the ability to do exactly that: if you know a Namecoin domain name, you can find out which TLS certificates are valid for it, with a threat model and codebase nearly identical to the battle-hardened Bitcoin.  In addition, we figured out how to make this work in the real world of uncooperative web browsers: Namecoin TLS certificate validation works with Chromium on Windows, without the high attack surface of intercepting proxies or the cookie leakage of browser extension API's.
 
Certificate authorities (CA's) pose a serious threat to the TLS ecosystem.  Unfortunately, the various proposed solutions (e.g. Convergence, DANE, HPKP, CAA, and CT) do not solve the underlying problem: the existence of trusted parties in the process of converting a domain name to a certificate acceptance policy.  While it may be an improvement to reshuffle the trusted parties to have more trust agility (Convergence), a smaller set of fully trusted parties (DANE), a more limited window of opportunity for attackers (HPKP and CT) or more accountability after-the-fact (HPKP, CAA, and CT), we think it's time to solve the underlying problem.  Namecoin introduces the ability to do exactly that: if you know a Namecoin domain name, you can find out which TLS certificates are valid for it, with a threat model and codebase nearly identical to the battle-hardened Bitcoin.  In addition, we figured out how to make this work in the real world of uncooperative web browsers: Namecoin TLS certificate validation works with Chromium on Windows, without the high attack surface of intercepting proxies or the cookie leakage of browser extension API's.

Latest revision as of 11:02, 27 December 2017

Description Certificate authorities suck, but the proposed replacements (e.g. DNSSEC/DANE) aren't so great either. We think Namecoin can help here, and the code is working and released!
Website(s)
Type Talk
Kids session No
Keyword(s) software, hacking, security
Tags TLS, Namecoin, Cryptocurrency
Processing assembly Assembly:Monero Assembly
Person organizing User:JeremyRand
Language en - English
en - English
Related to Projects:Namecoin
Other sessions...

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Starts at 2017/12/27 16:00
Ends at 2017/12/27 16:25
Duration 25 minutes
Location Room:Chaos West Stage

Certificate authorities (CA's) pose a serious threat to the TLS ecosystem. Unfortunately, the various proposed solutions (e.g. Convergence, DANE, HPKP, CAA, and CT) do not solve the underlying problem: the existence of trusted parties in the process of converting a domain name to a certificate acceptance policy. While it may be an improvement to reshuffle the trusted parties to have more trust agility (Convergence), a smaller set of fully trusted parties (DANE), a more limited window of opportunity for attackers (HPKP and CT) or more accountability after-the-fact (HPKP, CAA, and CT), we think it's time to solve the underlying problem. Namecoin introduces the ability to do exactly that: if you know a Namecoin domain name, you can find out which TLS certificates are valid for it, with a threat model and codebase nearly identical to the battle-hardened Bitcoin. In addition, we figured out how to make this work in the real world of uncooperative web browsers: Namecoin TLS certificate validation works with Chromium on Windows, without the high attack surface of intercepting proxies or the cookie leakage of browser extension API's.