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Unformatted text preview: house keys with a neighbor because I may lose mine. If house keys were like cryptographic keys, and I lost them, I could never get inside and recover my possessions, ever again. Just as I keep off-site backups of my data, it makes sense to keep backups of my data-encryption keys. Previous Table of Contents Next Products | Contact Us | About Us | Privacy | Ad Info | Home Use of this site is subject to certain Terms & Conditions, Copyright © 1996-2000 EarthWeb Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of EarthWeb is prohibited. Read EarthWeb's privacy statement. To access the contents, click the chapter and section titles. Applied Cryptography, Second Edition: Protocols, Algorthms, and Source Code in C (cloth)
Brief Full Advanced Search Search Tips (Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.) Author(s): Bruce Schneier ISBN: 0471128457 Publication Date: 01/01/96 Search this book:
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----------- 8.9 Compromised Keys
All of the protocols, techniques, and algorithms in this book are secure only if the key (the private key in a public-key system) remains secret. If Alice’s key is lost, stolen, printed in the newspaper, or otherwise compromised, then all her security is gone. If the compromised key was for a symmetric cryptosystem, Alice has to change her key and hope the actual damage was minimal. If it was a private key, she has bigger problems; her public key is probably on servers all over the network. And if Eve gets access to Alice’s private key, she can impersonate her on the network: reading encrypted mail, signing correspondence, entering into contracts, and so forth. Eve can, effectively, become Alice. It is vital that news of a private key’s compromise propagate quickly throughout the network. Any databases of public keys must immediately be notified that a particular private key has been compromised, lest some unsuspecting person encrypt a message in that compromised...
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