[cryptography] SSL is not "broken by design"

ianG iang at iang.org
Fri Sep 23 15:21:32 EDT 2011

On 24/09/11 05:13 AM, Jon Callas wrote:
> On Sep 23, 2011, at 11:17 AM, Ben Laurie wrote:
>> On Thu, Sep 22, 2011 at 4:46 PM, Peter Gutmann
>> <pgut001 at cs.auckland.ac.nz>  wrote:
>>> Ben Laurie<ben at links.org>  writes:
>>>> Well, don't tease. How?
>>> The link I've posted before (but didn't want to keep spamming to the list):
>>> http://www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/~pgut001/pubs/pki_risk.pdf
>> That was a fun read and I mostly agree, but it raises some questions...
>> a) Key continuity is nice, but ... are you swapping one set of
>> problems for another? What happens when I lose my key? How do I roll
>> my key? I just added a second server with a different key, and now a
>> bunch of users have the "wrong" key - what do I do? How do I deal with
>> a compromised key?
> Great rhetorical questions, Ben. You nail it.
> Continuity is great, but it has its own set of problems that include all the ones you mention. Rolling keys is the easiest one of them and can be solved pretty much the same way. But all the others are problems that continuity introduces. I brought up these issues in my long rant. Continuity can solve some, but not all of the problems.

Think of it as CA-signed+key-continuity.  Not either/or, but both, 
integrated, melded.

One result of this is that smaller merchants err towards self-signed, 
and rely on the KC/TOFU features.  As they grow up, they go and buy a 
white cert.  Then, a green cert.

This is the essence of a well-behaved market:  that there a range of 
open products available to match the budgets and needs of the differing 
participants.  In contrast, a non-well-behaved market often is 
constrained under some arbitrary compliance level which suits no-one.


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