Stayin’ Alive: Aliveness as an Alternative to Authentication

  • Jonathan Anderson
  • Robert N. M. Watson
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7622)


Authentication protocols attempt to discern whether or not a user is who she says she is based on what she has, is or knows. In many situtations, however, such as protecting Wikis from robots and Distributed Hash Tables from sybils, identity is less important than liveness: it’s not who you are that matters, it’s whether or not you are alive. We propose extensions to the Kerberos authentication which allow systems to test whether or not they are interacting with a real person, optionally disregarding their identity. We demonstrate how such extensions could be used to support realistic user interactions with requiring shared definitions of global identity.


Hash Table Authentication Protocol Security Protocol Authentication Service Anonymous User 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jonathan Anderson
    • 1
  • Robert N. M. Watson
    • 1
  1. 1.Computer LaboratoryUniversity of CambridgeUK

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