ACM Monet: Special Issue on Security in Mobile Computing Environments
A Secure Infrastructure for Service Discovery and Access in Pervasive Computing
October 12, 2003
Security is paramount to the success of pervasive computing environments. The system presented in this paper provides a communications and security infrastructure that goes far in advancing the goal of anywhere - anytime computing. Our work securely enables clients to access and utilize services in heterogeneous networks. We provide a service registration and discovery mechanism implemented through a hierarchy of service management. The system is built upon a simplified Public Key Infrastructure that provides for authentication, non-repudiation, anti-playback, and access control. Smartcards are used as secure containers for digital certicates. The system is implemented in Java and we use Extensible Markup Language as the sole medium for communications and data exchange. Currently, we are solely dependent on a base set of access rights for our distributed trust model however, we are expanding the model to include the delegation of rights based upon a predefined policy. In our proposed expansion, instead of exclusively relying on predefined access rights, we have developed a flexible representation of trust information, in Prolog, that can model permissions, obligations, entitlements, and prohibitions. In this paper, we present the implementation of our system and describe the modifications to the design that are required to further enhance distributed trust. Our implementation is applicable to any distributed service infrastructure, whether the infrastructure is wired, mobile, or ad-hoc.
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