Re: [TLS] Adoption call for draft-davidben-tls13-pkcs1

David Benjamin <> Mon, 21 October 2019 16:20 UTC

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From: David Benjamin <>
Date: Mon, 21 Oct 2019 12:19:57 -0400
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To: Richard Barnes <>
Cc: Hubert Kario <>, "" <>
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Subject: Re: [TLS] Adoption call for draft-davidben-tls13-pkcs1
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On Mon, Oct 21, 2019 at 12:11 PM Richard Barnes <> wrote:

> On Mon, Oct 21, 2019 at 11:44 AM David Benjamin <>
> wrote:
>> On Mon, Oct 21, 2019 at 9:42 AM Hubert Kario <> wrote:
>>> On Friday, 18 October 2019 20:44:03 CEST Christopher Wood wrote:
>>> > This email starts a call for adoption of draft-davidben-tls13-pkcs1-00,
>>> > which can be found here:
>>> >
>>> >
>>> >
>>> > It will run until November 1, 2019. Please indicate whether or not you
>>> would
>>> > like to see this draft adopted and whether you will review and provide
>>> > feedback on it going forward.
>>> Yes, requiring RSA-PSS causes interoperability issues with smartcards
>>> that
>>> don't implement this 16 year old algorithm. But being able to say "if
>>> you're
>>> using TLS 1.3 that means you are not using legacy crypto" has non
>>> insignificant value too.
>>> This document erodes that.
>> The document goes into the rationale here under Security Considerations.
>> I'm unhappy about this too, but our experience is that devices without PSS
>> support are fairly common in client certificates. The negotiation order
>> means that accounting for such devices effectively means servers hold back
>> TLS 1.3 for *all* their clients, not just those that are affected.
>> Additionally, even if one could get the negotiation order correct, TLS 1.3
>> fixes a serious privacy leak with client certificates. Keeping those
>> clients on TLS 1.2 means they continue to leak their identity over the
>> network.
>> To mitigate the second-order effects, the document intentionally makes
>> the code points client-only (the above motivations don't apply for server
>> keys), as well as allocating separate code points from the existing PKCS#1
>> values. If a client or server wishes to not use[*] PKCS#1 signatures in TLS
>> 1.3, it doesn't need to advertise/accept those code points. TLS libraries
>> probably should also disable them by default.
>> Given all that, I think adding code points for deployments that need them
>> is the right tradeoff.
> I think I agree with both of you here.  Eroding the modernity of TLS 1.3
> makes me sad, but the draft does a good job of scoping the change to be
> minimal.
> The latter points you make here could be stronger in the document.  Where
> you talk about the signature_algorithms in the CertificateRequest, you
> could also note that if a PKCS#1 signature is received using an algorithm
> not in that list, then the server MUST reject it (even though this is
> probably duplicative of RFC 8446).  You could probably also say that server
> implementations SHOULD disable these code points by default.

Sounds good to me.  I'll include something to that effect in the next

(What's the usual order of operations here? It seems weird to change a
document mid-adoption-call, and, if the document is adopted, it also seems
weird to make the first TLSWG revision different from the document from the
adoption call. That suggests tabling this for a little while.)