[cryptography] The next generation secure email solution

grarpamp grarpamp at gmail.com
Sun Dec 15 18:20:03 EST 2013


Moving the last couple days talk to this thread seems fine.

On Sun, Dec 15, 2013 at 3:19 PM, Ralf Senderek <crypto at senderek.ie> wrote:
> On Sun, 15 Dec 2013 grarpamp wrote:
>
>> The only way to have any real global seamless success is to go
>> ground up with a completely new model. IMO, that will be some
>> form of p2p message system where every address is a crypto key,
>> masked for grandma by her contact list, decrypted out your p2p
>> daemon and piped into your local mail processing (MUA/filter/lists)
>> and filesystem (encryption). At least that way your local mail tools
>> will still work (no one will give those up anyway).
>
>
> If you are so sure, can you tell us how the next generation secure email
> solution will solve the "trust problem", please.

Though unclear, that sounds like the old trust of a CA/PKI system problem.

> How does the p2p daemon
> find the correct crypto key, so that every user can rely on its invisible
> performance?

In general I suggest that people wish to use messaging with each other
once they already know them (or have some other trusted web to them).
As in, Hey John, nice to meet ya today, what's your key (address), I'll
message you later. Or Hey Jane, what's John's address. Same for
employers, businesses, etc. Such peer groups bootstrap and grow
very fast. Thus the perceived need for a cold lookup of Ralf, isn't much of
a real one.
Once you know the address (node crypto key), you put it 'To: <key>',
mua hands to spool, p2p daemon reads spool, looks up key in DHT and
sends msg off across the transport to the far key (node) when it is
reachable. Hopefully the transport looks like I2P/Tor in being a secure
random hop layer. In fact, those could probably be used today, they
have the keys as nodes and user facing ports for inbound/outbound
daemons. They just need scaling work to n-billion nodes (users,
aka: the hard part). People are already plugging postfix, bittorrent,
etc into these networks.

Tor is not currently addressible at the user level by the full key,
it 'shortens' the key into a 16char onion address. As you may be
hinting at... yes, that is bad... collisions, and needing secondary lookup
layers into the full key. Tor may be moving to full key addressibility
soon, see tor-dev for that.

I2P (and Phantom, and probably GnuNet) are addressible with full keys.
So you can send to 'account at key' with them if you want, and keep the
John/Jane/Ralf human style lookups in your MUA addressbook (once
you know them) without needing a secondary lookup layer into the full key.

No, I am not sure. But when looking at some of the p2p transport
layers that have come along so far, it seems like a fairly strong
possibility for a new backend transport model while retaining user
level mail tools... mutt, maildrop, mailman, Thunderbird, etc. Most
of what you'd need there is support for very long addresses and
split horizon handoff to local daemon/spool based on recognizing
what the destination net is... .onion, .i2p, etc.
I'd like to read what Pond and I2P-Bote are doing with some parts of
this as well.

I don't believe you need a trusted CA/PKI service to successfully
bootstrap users and their addresses/keys into a new global messaging
system. If I want to know what some unknown like Bruce's key is, I'll
look it up on his website, social net, list posts, etc. If that's what you
mean.


More information about the cryptography mailing list