Manual Reference Pages - MONKEYSPHERE (7)
monkeysphere - ssh and TLS authentication framework using OpenPGP Web of Trust
Monkeysphere is a framework to leverage the OpenPGP web of trust
for OpenSSH and TLS key-based authentication. OpenPGP keys are
tracked via GnuPG, and added to the authorized_keys and known_hosts
files used by OpenSSH for connection authentication. Monkeysphere can
also be used by a validation agent to validate TLS connections
Each host that uses the Monkeysphere to authenticate its remote
users needs some way to determine that those users are who they claim
to be. SSH permits key-based authentication, but we want instead to
bind authenticators to human-comprehensible user identities. This
switch from raw keys to User IDs makes it possible for administrators
to see intuitively who has access to an account, and it also enables
end users to transition keys (and revoke compromised ones)
automatically across all Monkeysphere-enabled hosts. The User
IDs and certifications that the Monkeysphere relies on are found
in the OpenPGP Web of Trust.
However, in order to establish this binding, each host must know whose
cerifications to trust. Someone who a host trusts to certify User
Identities is called an Identity Certifier. A host must have at least
one Identity Certifier in order to bind User IDs to keys. Commonly,
every ID Certifier would be trusted by the host to fully identify any
User ID, but more nuanced approaches are possible as well. For
example, a given host could specify a dozen ID certifiers, but assign
them all "marginal" trust. Then any given User ID would need to be
certified in the OpenPGP Web of Trust by at least three of those
It is also possible to limit the scope of trust for a given ID
Certifier to a particular domain. That is, a host can be configured
to fully (or marginally) trust a particular ID Certifier only when
they certify identities within, say, example.org (based on the e-mail
address in the User ID).
The monkeysphere commands work from a set of user IDs to determine
acceptable keys for ssh and TLS authentication. OpenPGP keys are
considered acceptable if the following criteria are met:
The key must have the authentication (a) usage flag set.
The key itself must be valid, i.e. it must be well-formed, not
expired, and not revoked.
The relevant user ID must be signed by a trusted identity certifier.
The OpenPGP keys for hosts have associated service names (OpenPGP
user IDs) that are based on URI specifications for the service. Some
Jameson Rollins <firstname.lastname@example.org>,
Daniel Kahn Gillmor <email@example.com>
|monkeysphere ||MONKEYSPHERE (7) ||March 2010 |
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