Problem with faked-system-time option

Jerome Baum jerome at
Thu Jun 16 02:11:59 CEST 2011

>> It doesn't cease to be evidence just because it is no longer
>> uncontested.
> ... In point of fact, that's *exactly what happens to it*.

Actually, no. It's still evidence. It's just not evidence that says
"this document existed on the 10th of July". It's evidence that says
"someone who was at any point in time in possession of this key, and
who has the ability to manipulate the timestamp (or was in possession
at the actual time listed in the signature), is claiming that the
document existed on the 10th of July".

1. X is evidence for: A is true.

2. X is evidence for: Tom claims: A is true.

Notice the indirection.

>> Fair enough. But is it so easy to repudiate something like
>> ?
> I'm fairly sure it is.  Most of the tricks lawyers use to repudiate
> timestamps on physical documents also apply against electronic
> documents, and I'm pretty sure contract lawyers are worth their paychecks.

What tricks would those be? I'd love to see a Bailiff's records
repudiated in court. The point is, just because I can falsify a
timestamp on a physical document, doesn't mean I can falsify every
timestamp that could be used to support a claim. Electronic timestamps
are not physical timestamps, records held by notaries, bailiffs, even
any other witnesses, are definitely more difficult to repudiate than
the date I put down next to my signature.

Oh, and I am pretty sure that a timestamp created in accordance with
federal electronic signature laws would be considered reliable and be
very difficult to dispute.

Jerome Baum
tel +49-1578-8434336
email jerome at
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