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REVIEW: "Introduction to Identity-Based Encryption", Luther Martin

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  • Rob, grandpa of Ryan, Trevor, Devon & Han
    BKIDBENC.RVW 20080514 Introduction to Identity-Based Encryption , Luther Martin, 2008, 978-1-59693-238-8, U$89.00 %A Luther Martin %C 685 Canton St.,
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 25, 2008
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      BKIDBENC.RVW 20080514

      "Introduction to Identity-Based Encryption", Luther Martin, 2008,
      978-1-59693-238-8, U$89.00
      %A Luther Martin
      %C 685 Canton St., Norwood, MA 02062
      %D 2008
      %G 978-1-59693-238-8 1-59693-238-4
      %I Artech House/Horizon
      %O U$89.00 617-769-9750 800-225-9977 artech@...
      %O http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1596932384/robsladesinterne
      %O http://www.amazon.ca/exec/obidos/ASIN/1596932384/robsladesin03-20
      %O Audience s- Tech 2 Writing 1 (see revfaq.htm for explanation)
      %P 232 p.
      %T "Introduction to Identity-Based Encryption"

      The preface states that identity-based encryption (IBE) is equivalent,
      in importance, to the invention of asymmetric encryption, but it
      doesn't say why (nor, in fact, what identity-based encryption actually

      Although chapter one is an introduction, the definition of IBE is on a
      very abstract level. We are told that the intent of IBE is to allow
      one party to create a public key for another, identifiable, entity,
      and encrypt material for transmission to them, even though an
      asymmetric key pair has not been established in advance. The receiver
      could then generate a corresponding private key, and retrieve the
      original information. Some mathematics (number theory) involved in
      asymmetric encryption is presented in chapter two, but not explained.
      The same level of non-exegesis is used, in chapter three, regarding
      elliptic curves, and in chapter four in relation to Tate pairing. All
      we are told is that these pairings are used in many IBE schemes.
      Chapter five turns to the mathematics of basic encryption schemes, and
      ends by looking at the theoretical cracking of keys by quantum
      computers, using, for example, Shor's algorithm. (Confidence in the
      practicality of Martin's arithmetic is not helped by his provision of
      a table of key cracking times that completely ignores the existence of
      Moore's Law.) Some common (non-IBE) encryption algorithms are
      described in chapter six, and Martin actually does a better job
      explaining these.

      Chapters seven to ten outline four IBE encryption schemes. The math
      is all there (including analysis of the weaknesses, and potential
      means of remediation), but the rather central point of the choice and
      determination of identity values still has not been addressed. All of
      these systems rely on generation of the private keys from a single
      agent (which can, therefore, become a single point of failure), so
      chapter eleven examines ways to support key generation with multiple
      sources. Ways to improve the performance of the (computationally
      intensive) operations of the IBE systems are examined in chapter

      The title is rather unfortunate, since Martin never does provide much
      of an introduction. The content is intriguing, although the practical
      applications of any IBE system turn on the question of the identity
      data, which is left unaddressed. Martin's assertion of the importance
      of IBE is therefore not demonstrated in this work.

      copyright Robert M. Slade, 2008 BKIDBENC.RVW 20080514

      ====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
      rslade@... slade@... rslade@...
      Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it's time
      to pause and reflect. - Mark Twain
      victoria.tc.ca/techrev/rms.htm blogs.securiteam.com/index.php/archives/author/p1/
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