Re: [OAUTH-WG] Proof of Possession Tokens: Next Steps

Justin Richer <> Tue, 19 January 2016 16:34 UTC

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From: Justin Richer <>
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Date: Tue, 19 Jan 2016 11:34:18 -0500
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To: Hannes Tschofenig <>
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Subject: Re: [OAUTH-WG] Proof of Possession Tokens: Next Steps
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Well that’s interesting: I was unaware I was being removed as the author of the HTTP signing draft. This is especially surprising after the presentation I gave at Yokohama about this topic. The draft hasn’t been updated because there’s not really been any discussion on it here in the group to drive an update, and I’m not one to artificially publish a new draft with the same content and a new date just to avoid the “expired” tag in the repository.

To see the direction I proposed that we go in at Yokohama, check my slides here: <>

Again, I got no real feedback on this and there was no discussion on the list. Even so, I’m implementing this in a Node.js application anyway that I plan to post back to the group here when it’s done.

 — Justin

> On Jan 19, 2016, at 6:45 AM, Hannes Tschofenig <> wrote:
> Hi all,
> I wanted to drop a high level message about possible next steps for the
> PoP work.
> As you have seen from my status update, see
>, the
> PoP architecture document was already in IESG processing but I have had
> asked Kathleen to delay the publication given that we ran into scoping
> issues, as discussed on the list. See
> The change of scope related to desire to not just binding a key to the
> access token but also to other parts of the OAuth system to avoid cases
> where an attacker can just obtain attack other parts of the system
> instead (for example, by obtaining an bearer-based refresh token to then
> obtain a new PoP access token).
> The recently discovered security problems tell us that we need to
> simplify our solutions a bit as well to ensure that we get the security
> analysed properly. More options means more time to analyse all the
> different options.
> What does this mean to simplify when I talk about expanding the scope in
> the earlier paragraph?
> I am suggesting to
> * to consider focusing on a public key-based only solution for the
> web/smart phone app space. (The ACE working group will have to develop a
> symmetric key-based version on their own, if desired.)
> * to extend the support of PoP token functionality throughout the entire
> solution. This means that we have to include support for a asymmetric
> version of PKCE into account (which had been discussed in the group
> already earlier already).
> * to define at least a TLS-based security security solution for the
> communication between the client and the resource server.
> * to rethink the work on the application layer security solution. The
> HTTP signing draft, which defines the application layer security
> solution for use between the client and the resource server, has expired
> and we will have to find new authors. I believe we got stuck a bit.
> Luckily new persons came along and volunteered to help, namely Fredrik
> Ljunggren and Jakob Schlyter. Nevertheless, the group will have to judge
> whether a newly developed application layer security solution is
> promising. My impression is that it is a very difficult to come up with
> a solution that satisfies the security requirements and, at the same
> time, also takes the deployment status of proxies and other middleware
> into account.
> * to make a decision about other extensions. Nat and Kepeng submitted
> the Sender Constrained JWT for OAuth2 2.0 document, see
> We asked the working group for feedback during IETF #93 and we couldn't
> get enough feedback at that time. Please give us feedback whether you
> are interested in exploring that solution direction as part of this
> process. Today, we don't have enough indication of interest for working
> on that solution direction.
> Before making any changes to the PoP document set we would like to hear
> your thoughts.
> Ciao
> Hannes
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