Section: Research Program


Given our experience in formal analysis of security protocols, including both protocol proofs and finding of flaws, it is tempting to use our experience to design protocols with security in mind and security proofs. This part includes both provably secure design techniques, as well as the development of new protocols.

General design techniques

Design techniques include composition results that allow one to design protocols in a modular way [51], [49]. Composition results come in many flavours: they may allow one to compose protocols with different objectives, e.g. compose a key exchange protocol with a protocol that requires a shared key or rely on a protocol for secure channel establishment, compose different protocols in parallel that may re-use some key material, or compose different sessions of the same protocol.

Another area where composition is of particular importance is Service Oriented Computing, where an “orchestrator” must combine some available component services, while guaranteeing some security properties. In this context, we work on the automated synthesis of the orchestrator or monitors for enforcing the security goals. These problems require the study of new classes of automata that communicate with structured messages.

New protocol design

We also design new protocols. Application areas that seem of particular importance are:

  • External hardware devices such as security APIs that allow for flexible key management, including key revocation, and their integration in security protocols. The security fiasco of the PKCS#11 standard [48], [53] witnesses the need for new protocols in this area.

  • Election systems that provide strong security guarantees. We have been working (in collaboration with the Caramba team) on a prototype implementation of an e-voting system, Belenios (http://belenios.gforge.inria.fr).

  • Mechanisms for publishing personal information (e.g. on social networks) in a controlled way.