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How to explain security protocols to your children

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Abstract

Security protocols combine two key components: a logical structure (who answers what, under which conditions?) as well as cryptography (encryption, signature, hash,. . .). It is not so easy to explain their principles and weaknesses to a non expert audience. Why is something an attack or not? For which attacker? With what purpose? In this paper, we propose an approach to introduce security protocols to a general audience, including children or even scientists from different fields. Its goal is to convey the implicit assumptions of our community, such as threat models or the participants' behaviour. This all-public introduction can be thought of as a story but, interestingly, can also be implemented physically with boxes and padlocks: manipulation helps to understand how protocols operate, even permitting non-expert participants to design their own-and thus to size the challenges of this task.
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hal-03475731 , version 1 (11-12-2021)

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Véronique Cortier, Itsaka Rakotonirina. How to explain security protocols to your children. Protocols, Strands, and Logic - Essays Dedicated to Joshua Guttman on the Occasion of his 66.66th Birthday, 13066, Springer, pp.112-123, 2021, LNCS, ⟨10.1007/978-3-030-91631-2_6⟩. ⟨hal-03475731⟩
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