Why CAs or public keysigning?

CL Gilbert Lamont_Gilbert@RigidSoftware.com
Thu Jun 19 15:54:02 2003

Hash: SHA1

Ingo Kl=F6cker wrote:
| On Wednesday 18 June 2003 18:53, David Shaw wrote:
|>On Wed, Jun 18, 2003 at 12:22:25PM -0400, Dennis Lambe Jr. wrote:
|>>Without the WoT, I could be anyone.  With the WoT, I could be
|>>anyone named Dennis Lambe Jr.  The WoT does not completely
|>>eliminate the problem of misrepresentation, but it makes it
|>>millions of times less likely.
|>It's even better than that: you're not just anyone named Dennis Lam=
|>Jr - you're anyone named Dennis Lambe Jr with a particular email
|>address.  Including an email addresses (with few exceptions like
|>shared or role accounts) very effectively elimiates nearly all
|>possible name duplications.
|>It is true that many signers do not take the time to verify an emai=
|>address when signing.  This is unfortunate.
| "many" is an understatement. My experience is that most signers do =
| verify email addresses. My primary uid was signed by 58 persons. On=
ly 3
| or 4 of the signers also verified my email addresses. (FWIW, I veri=
| all email addresses.) This wouldn't be a problem if those signers t=
| didn't verify my email addresses wouldn't have given their signatur=
| the highest possible rating 3. But some of them did. So it's not
| possible to distinguish really good signatures from not so good
| signatures.
| Even worth is that 2 or 3 signatures on my key are from people that
| never checked my ID. But that's another problem.
| To prevent overrated signatures I suggest to change
|    (2) I have done casual checking.
|    (3) I have done very careful checking.
| to
|    (2) I have checked the identity of this person.
|    (3) I have checked the identity and the email address of this pe=
| Alternatively (instead of changing the description of the existing
| grades) add
|    (4) I have done very careful checking and I even verified the em=
| addresses.

I suppose I am missing something.  I though trust levels were assigne=
to keys, not signatures.  I was not aware that I could sign someones
key, and assign some level to that signature.  AFAIK a signature is
absolute.  I can not assign anything to my own signature.

| Of course we can't hinder people from overrating their signatures. =
| the above wording would make it more obvious that just checking the
| identity is not enough for a high-rated signature. I'm convinced th=
| most people that overrated their signatures did so because they tho=
| that carefully checking the identity of the key owner would be enou=
| for a level 3 signature. IMO it's not enough.
| Regards,
| Ingo

- --
Thank you,

CL Gilbert
Free Java interface to Freechess.org
"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor
man's wisdom [is] despised, and his words are not heard." Ecclesiaste=
s 9:16

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