Encyclopedia of Cryptography and Security

2011 Edition
| Editors: Henk C. A. van Tilborg, Sushil Jajodia


  • Stuart Haber
  • Henri Massias
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-5906-5_136


As more and more of the world’s data is created, stored, and manipulated online, it is sometimes crucial to verify when a digital document or record was created or last modified. Ideally, any time-stamping procedures to do this should depend only on the data in the document in question, and should not be susceptible to tampering – either with the data, or with the time and date.

To be precise, and to fix our vocabulary, a time-stamping system consists of two procedures: a certification procedure, which produces for any digital record a time-stamp certificate attesting to the time of certification; and a validation procedure, which checks whether or not a given record–certificate pair is valid. Naturally, the aim is to ensure that the only pairs that will pass the validation test are those consisting of a record and a correctly computed time-stamp certificate for that record.

In many situations, a time-stamp certificate for a document will be more important as an...

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Recommended Reading

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stuart Haber
    • 1
  • Henri Massias
    • 2
  1. 1.HP LabsPrincetonUSA
  2. 2.University of LimogesLimogesFrance