Secure Schemes for Semi-Trusted Environment
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In recent years, two distributed system technologies have emerged: Peer-to-Peer (P2P) and cloud computing. For the former, the computers at the edge of networks share their resources, i.e., computing power, data, and network bandwidth, and obtain resources from other peers in the same community. Although this technology enables efficiency, scalability, and availability at low cost of ownership and maintenance, peers defined as ``like each other'' are not wholly controlled by one another or by the same authority. In addition, resources and functionality in P2P systems depend on peer contribution, i.e., storing, computing, routing, etc. These specific aspects raise security concerns and attacks that many researchers try to address. Most solutions proposed by researchers rely on public-key certificates from an external Certificate Authority (CA) or a centralized Public Key Infrastructure (PKI). However, both CA and PKI are contradictory to fully decentralized P2P systems that are self-organizing and infrastructureless. To avoid this contradiction, this thesis concerns the provisioning of public-key certificates in P2P communities, which is a crucial foundation for securing P2P functionalities and applications. We create a framework, named the Self-Organizing and Self-Healing CA group (SOHCG), that can provide certificates without a centralized Trusted Third Party (TTP). In our framework, a CA group is initialized in a Content Addressable Network (CAN) by trusted bootstrap nodes and then grows to a mature state by itself. Based on our group management policies and predefined parameters, the membership in a CA group is dynamic and has a uniform distribution over the P2P community; the size of a CA group is kept to a level that balances performance and acceptable security. The muticast group over an underlying CA group is constructed to reduce communication and computation overhead from collaboration among CA members. To maintain the quality of the CA group, the honest majority of members is maintained by a Byzantine agreement algorithm, and all shares are refreshed gradually and continuously. Our CA framework has been designed to meet all design goals, being self-organizing, self-healing, scalable, resilient, and efficient. A security analysis shows that the framework enables key registration and certificate issue with resistance to external attacks, i.e., node impersonation, man-in-the-middle (MITM), Sybil, and a specific form of DoS, as well as internal attacks, i.e., CA functionality interference and CA group subversion. Cloud computing is the most recent evolution of distributed systems that enable shared resources like P2P systems. Unlike P2P systems, cloud entities are asymmetric in roles like client-server models, i.e., end-users collaborate with Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) through Web interfaces or Web portals. Cloud computing is a combination of technologies, e.g., SOA services, virtualization, grid computing, clustering, P2P overlay networks, management automation, and the Internet, etc. With these technologies, cloud computing can deliver services with specific properties: on-demand self-service, broad network access, resource pooling, rapid elasticity, measured services. However, theses core technologies have their own intrinsic vulnerabilities, so they induce specific attacks to cloud computing. Furthermore, since public clouds are a form of outsourcing, the security of users' resources must rely on CSPs' administration. This situation raises two crucial security concerns for users: locking data into a single CSP and losing control of resources. Providing inter-operations between Application Service Providers (ASPs) and untrusted cloud storage is a countermeasure that can protect users from lock-in with a vendor and losing control of their data. To meet the above challenge, this thesis proposed a new authorization scheme, named OAuth and ABE based authorization (AAuth), that is built on the OAuth standard and leverages Ciphertext-Policy Attribute Based Encryption (CP-ABE) and ElGamal-like masks to construct ABE-based tokens. The ABE-tokens can facilitate a user-centric approach, end-to-end encryption and end-to-end authorization in semi-trusted clouds. With these facilities, owners can take control of their data resting in semi-untrusted clouds and safely use services from unknown ASPs. To this end, our scheme divides the attribute universe into two disjointed sets: confined attributes defined by owners to limit the lifetime and scope of tokens and descriptive attributes defined by authority(s) to certify the characteristic of ASPs. Security analysis shows that AAuth maintains the same security level as the original CP-ABE scheme and protects users from exposing their credentials to ASP, as OAuth does. Moreover, AAuth can resist both external and internal attacks, including untrusted cloud storage. Since most cryptographic functions are delegated from owners to CSPs, AAuth gains computing power from clouds. In our extensive simulation, AAuth's greater overhead was balanced by greater security than OAuth's. Furthermore, our scheme works seamlessly with storage providers by retaining the providers' APIs in the usual way.
Cite this version of the work
Anuchart Tassanaviboon (2012). Secure Schemes for Semi-Trusted Environment. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/6457