[Cfrg] Time to recharter CFRG as a working group? Was: Re: [secdir] ISE seeks help with some crypto drafts

"StJohns, Michael" <msj@nthpermutation.com> Sun, 10 March 2019 22:45 UTC

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From: "StJohns, Michael" <msj@nthpermutation.com>
Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2019 18:45:08 -0400
Message-ID: <CANeU+ZCmiTKfE1_YgjM6GX9ZCw_35mZoT8M-6VL72UhbenT2og@mail.gmail.com>
To: Stephen Farrell <stephen.farrell@cs.tcd.ie>
Cc: CFRG <cfrg@irtf.org>, "RFC ISE (Adrian Farrel)" <rfc-ise@rfc-editor.org>, secdir <secdir@ietf.org>
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Subject: [Cfrg] Time to recharter CFRG as a working group? Was: Re: [secdir] ISE seeks help with some crypto drafts
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I’ve been wondering for a while now whether it’s time to move the CFRG over
to the IETF as a working group.  Stephen’s comment on routing stuff
directly to the CFRG suggests to me that it’s probably time or RSN.

   In recent years, the CFRG has produced documents that are for lack of a
better phrase de facto standards.  The rate of document production of the
CFRG mimics more closely that of a WG than the other extant RGs AFAICT.
As an RG the CFRG isn’t permitted to publish standards track documents, nor
is the IESG or the ISE permitted or constrained to require a conflict
review on the documents the CFRG does produce.  [the latter comment is my
understanding of the rules of the research stream - it may be flawed, but
the purpose of RGs is supposed to be looking at futures and that by
definition shouldn’t be conflicting with the nows].

An alternative might be to charter a crypto standards WG and try to keep
the CFRG focused on years out - say how the heck do we deal with the
quantum apocalypse?

Or keep the math in CFRG and the on the wire specs for using in a WG.



On Sun, Mar 10, 2019 at 17:48 Stephen Farrell <stephen.farrell@cs.tcd.ie>

> Hiya,
> On 10/03/2019 20:57, Tony Arcieri wrote:
> >
> > I think there are significant compelling reasons to prefer OCB mode
> > over pretty much all other existing modes:
> FWIW, I don't, because we're not dealing with a clean slate.
> In the IETF context, whether or not OCB is a bit better
> then currently deployed modes is not an interesting
> question.
> One interesting question might be: is OCB so much better
> that it could we displace uses of some existing mode with
> OCB. That seems unlikely to me for the widely used modes.
> Another interesting question might be: is OCB so much
> better that we want to deploy it alongside current modes.
> I don't see the overall benefit of that myself.
> So even though I'm happy to accept that OCB has better
> properties than e.g. GCM, I don't think it's so much
> better that RFCs for it are that useful.
> That said, if the RFC for such a thing said "this is nice
> for brand new stuff (although library support will be less
> comprehensive) but is not worth the costs associated
> with adding it to existing protocols" then I'd be less
> against such RFCs being produced. Understandably enough,
> that kind of statement doesn't get added to such RFCs;-)
> S.
> PS: In case the ISE is still listening, the above is a
> reason why I think having CFRG produce this kind of RFC
> (instead of routing 'em via the ISE) would be a better
> plan. CFRG could (I think) likely reach better informed
> judgements (in the open) as to whether or not some crypto
> technique is really worth documenting in an RFC.
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