Addressing the Problem of Undetected Signature Key Compromise

Mike Just, Paul C. van Oorschot

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Suppose that messages have been signed using a user's signature private key during the period of time after a key compromise but before the compromise is detected. This is a period of undetected key compromise. Various techniques for detecting a compromise and preventing forged signature acceptance are presented. Attack protection is achieved by requiring a second level of authentication for the acceptance of signatures, based on information shared with a trusted authority, independent of the signature private key and signing algorithm. Alternatively, attack detection is achieved with an independent sychronization with the authority, using a second factor/adaptive (non-secret) parameter. Preventing forged signature acceptance
subsequent to the detection is achieved by the use of a cooling-off or latency period, combined with periodic resynchronization.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Network and Distributed System Security Symposium, NDSS 1999, San Diego, California, USA
Place of PublicationReston (Virginia)
PublisherThe Internet Society
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)1891562045
Publication statusPublished - 1999


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