Re: What ASN.1 got right

Dirk-Willem van Gulik <dirkx@webweaving.org> Tue, 02 March 2021 18:25 UTC

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From: Dirk-Willem van Gulik <dirkx@webweaving.org>
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Subject: Re: What ASN.1 got right
Date: Tue, 2 Mar 2021 19:24:13 +0100
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To: Michael Thomas <mike@mtcc.com>
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On 2 Mar 2021, at 19:19, Michael Thomas <mike@mtcc.com> wrote:
> On 3/2/21 12:33 AM, Dirk-Willem van Gulik wrote:
>> On 2 Mar 2021, at 02:18, Michael Thomas <mike@mtcc.com> wrote:
>> 
>>> The combination of ASN.1 and X.509 has done irreparable harm to identity on the internet. X.509 provides exactly one benefit: the ability to verify offline that almost nobody cares about anymore.

>> Actually - to provide a counter point - with the current Covid-19 response effort - the fact that we have X.509 (and CMS, pkcs7/10) and can do off-line verification is proving to be a great asset.  As it allows for verification of signatures without the need for the verifier to instantly disclose to world+dog what they are doing. And this is in addition to the ability of any app to set up trusted connections based on cached/offline data. So I would not discount this aspect too quickly.
>> 
> Er, how so? And what does it have to do with the covids? And once you rely on online crl's, it's all the same.

Purely as an example - that, even in this time of the internet - the `ability to verify offline' is something one may care about - in this particular case --  to verify a X.509 in the field, entirely off-line and without any communication.  If you need to do OCSP or CRL's - then obviously a CRL may be a better idea if you are trying to minimise the surveillance options. 

Dw