NDN-ABS: Attribute-Based Signature Scheme for Named Data Networking
by Sanjeev Kaushik Ramani, Reza Tourani, George Torres, Satyajayant Misra, and Alexander Afanasyev
The Named Data Networking architecture mandates cryptographic signatures of packets at the network layer. Traditional RSA and ECDSA public key signatures require obtaining signer’s NDN certificate (and, if needed, the next-level certificates of the trust chain) to validate the signatures. This potentially creates two problems. First, the communication channels must be active in order to retrieve the certificates, which is not always the case in disruptive and ad hoc environments. Second, the certificate identifies the individual producer and thus producer anonymity cannot be guaranteed if necessary.
In this paper, we present NDN-ABS, an alternative NDN signatures design based on the attribute-based signatures, to addresses both these problems. With NDN-ABS, data packets can be verified without the need for any network retrieval (provided the trust anchor is pre-configured) and attributes can be designed to only identify application-defined high-level producer anonymity sets, thus ensuring individual producer’s anonymity. The paper uses an illustrative smart-campus environment to define and evaluate the design and highlight how the NDN trust schema can manage the validity of NDN-ABS signatures. The paper also discusses performance limitations of ABS and potential ways they can be overcome in a production environment.