16th Annual Computer Security Applications Conference
December 11-15, 2000
New Orleans, Louisiana

Secure Smart Homes using Jini and UIUC SESAME

Jalal Al-Muhtadi, Manish Anand, M. Dennis Mickunas & Roy H. Campbell
Univ. of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

In this paper, we discuss our approach to constructing a dynamic and secure "Smart Home" environment and tackling the challenges associated with it. We envision a Smart Home as an active environment populated with smart, dynamically configurable consumer devices capable of interacting with humans and other smart devices. In such a dynamic and active environment, there is a great need for an agile, lightweight, distributed security mechanism. This security mechanism needs to be programmable and able to evolve as rapidly as the environment itself. Yet, this mechanism should be able to adapt to environments with scarce resources. We present Tiny SESAME to meet these challenges while utilizing Jini technology from Sun Microsystems to handle the common parts of distributed devices. Tiny SESAME is a lightweight, component-based, Java-implementation of a subset of SESAME. SESAME is an extension to Kerberos that supports public key technologies, access control, and delegation of access rights. We discuss our Tiny SESAME and how it could be integrated with handheld and consumer devices.

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