Several of our “Babysteps” examine PKI; see the following:
- No. 8: A critical look at Bridge CAs argues that BCAs might not be ideal in non-government environments, because they aim at establishing the equivalence of certificates.
- No. 5: PKI interoperability unpacks how digital certificates can help with the act of authentication and shows it really isn’t complicated.
- No. 4: Exposing some PKI myths acknowledges the grains of truth behind many of today’s misconceptions, and unpacks the real issues.
- No. 1: PKI in health & welfare sets out PKI’s unique ability to secure paperless transactions in the complex, high risk, long lived and multi-party applications characteristic of the health & welfare sector.
A major peer reviewed paper presented at the NIST’s 7th Symposium on Identity and Trust on the Internet, March 2008. This work draws together most of Stephen’s deep thinking on PKI from over a decade’s work, canvassing the reasons for PKI’s historical difficulties, popular misconceptions, and ways to break the unhelpful nexus betwen Big PKI and centralised ID systems.Read more
A paper presented to the academic stream of the AusCERT 2005 conference about using anonymous digital certificates to securely convey health identifiers.Read more
Prepared for the Australian IT Security Forum, November 2003. “Our vision has been developed through extensive dialogue with users and with government. The position is deeply informed by practical experience of some of the world’s largest and most effective PKI rollouts. We present here the major implications of this experience for systems integration, PKI regulation and cross border interoperability.”Read more
This breakthrough paper from 2000 articulated in detail an interoperable PKI where the fitness for purpose and standards-conformance of certificates were evidenced by digital audit certificates. The audit of CAs would be overseen by an ISO 17025 accreditation framework, scalable to build an international PKI under the auspices of existing accreditation bodies.Read more
Published in April 1999 in Privacy Law and Policy Reporter, this paper perhaps for the first time described how digital certificates could represent credentials, memberships and business relationships, instead of personal identity.Read more
Appeared in the international Secure Computing Magazine. It argues against one-size-fits-all “identity” certificates, because in business, we do not entertain stranger-to-stranger transactions. The paper also includes a useful taxonomy of electronic signature regulations.Read more
A light touch, standards-based framework for cross-recognition of Certification Authorities that have been externally accredited, thus allowing certificates from one jurisdiction to be used in another. Paper presented to the Attorney Generals Privacy and Security conference, Melbourne, August 2001.Read more
A pioneering paper delivered in 2001 to the Information Security Solutions Europe Conference, London, outlining an international PKI framework.Read more
A critical review of “Attribute Certificates” and the problems associated with using them to convey special rights and credentials. First appeared in the Quarterly Journal of the PricewaterhouseCoopers Cryptographic Centre of Excellence Issue 3, 2000. Reproduced with persmission.Read more
I wrote this paper for my SANS Institute GSEC Certification in 2002. It analyses the general risks associated with safekeeping of end users’ private keys in a PKI (and includes some reflections on the idea of “non repudiation”).Read more