[Bitcoin-development] secure assigned bitcoin address directory

Chris D'Costa chris.dcosta at meek.io
Tue Apr 1 12:20:37 UTC 2014

The code will be available as soon as we are ready, and apologies again for it not being a more meaningful conversation - I did say I hesitated about posting it ;)

I think it is fair to say that we have not assumed anything about other technologies, without asking if they can answer all (not just some) of the questions I raised. I have yet to be convinced that anything existing meets those requirements, namecoin included, hence why we are looking at creating an alternative (non-coin by the way) but this alternative has some  of the important properties that the distributed ledger provides.

To answer the question about expiry, we're looking at something we'll call proof-of-life for the device keys. In a nutshell on of the pieces of information stored with the device public key will be a last heard from date - a date which is sent only by the device from time to time. Records that are expired are devices that have not been heard from for a given period (to be decided). As the device keys are not related to the Bitcoin keys it will be safe to expire a device key by default. An expired device would require reinitialisation, which would make a new device key set, a new proof of life date and then the Bitcoin keys (BIP32) can be restored. 


Chris D'Costa

Sent from my iPhone

> On 1 Apr 2014, at 13:32, Jeff Garzik <jgarzik at bitpay.com> wrote:
> Re-reading this, even with the most recent message, is still isn't
> clear _precisely_ how your technology works, or why it is better than
> namecoin.  User profiles (and distributed ledgers) need to reflect the
> latest updates, and a stream of updates of over time is precisely what
> bitcoin technology secures.
> Keys expire or are compromised, and the public ledger needs to reflect
> that.  There is a lot of computer science involved in making sure the
> public ledger you see is not an outdated view.  A log-like stream of
> changes is not the only way to do things, but other methods need less
> hand-wavy details (show the code) before they are well recognized as
> useful.
>> On Mon, Mar 31, 2014 at 7:14 AM, Chris D'Costa <chris.dcosta at meek.io> wrote:
>> Security of transmission of person-to-person pay-to addresses is one of the use cases that we are addressing on our hardware wallet.
>> I have yet to finish the paper but in a nutshell it uses a decentralised ledger of, what we refer to as, "device keys".
>> These keys are not related in any way to the Bitcoin keys, (which is why I'm hesitating about discussing it here) neither do they even attempt to identify the human owner if the device. But they do have a specific use case and that is to provide "advanced knowledge" of a publickey that can be used for encrypting a message to an intended recipient, without the requirement for a third-party CA, and more importantly without prior dialogue. We think it is this that would allow you to communicate a pay-to address to someone without seeing them in a secure way.
>> As I understand it the BlockChain uses "time" bought through proof of work to establish a version of the truth, we are using time in the reverse sense : advanced knowledge of all pubkeys. Indeed all devices could easily check their own record to identify problems on the ledger.
>> There is of course more to this, but I like to refer to the "distributed ledger of device keys" as the "Web-of-trust re-imagined" although that isn't strictly true.
>> Ok there you have it. The cat is out of the bag, feel free to give feedback, I have to finish the paper, apologies if it is not a topic for this list.
>> Regards
>> Chris D'Costa
>>> On 31 Mar 2014, at 12:21, vv01f <vv01f at riseup.net> wrote:
>>> Some users on bitcointalk[0] would like to have their vanity addresses
>>> available for others easily to find and verify the ownership over a kind
>>> of WoT. Right now they sign their own addresses and quote them in the
>>> forums.
>>> As I pointed out there already the centralized storage in the forums is
>>> not secury anyhow and signed messages could be swapped easily with the
>>> next hack of the forums.
>>> Is that use case taken care of in any plans already?
>>> I thought about abusing pgp keyservers but that would suit for single
>>> vanity addresses only.
>>> It seems webfinger could be part of a solution where servers of a
>>> business can tell and proof you if a specific address is owned by them.
>>> [0] https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=502538
>>> [1] https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=505095
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> -- 
> Jeff Garzik
> Bitcoin core developer and open source evangelist
> BitPay, Inc.      https://bitpay.com/

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