[onerng talk] Open hardware security key?

Paul Campbell paul at taniwha.com
Mon Apr 27 19:53:29 BST 2015

On Mon, 27 Apr 2015 07:12:20 Bill Cox wrote:
> I figure you guys already know what's going on in this space.  I am a fan
> of the Yubikey, but since they've made it impossible to load your own keys,
> you have to trust both Yubikey and NXP 100%.  They wont disclose how their
> RNG works, and Yubikeys in the past have been known to generate the _same_
> secret keys.

I've supported mooltipass (https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/mooltipass-open-source-offline-password-keeper - I'm waiting for mine) 

I'm in two minds about competing with another open source project - on one 
hand there's only so much mind share (and money) to go around it may not be 
viable for anyone to have competing projects - on the other hand I figure we 
need lots of options, at least one of us is bound to get it right :-) this 
stuff is hard

> One great features of the Yubikey is it's touch sensor.  It refuses to do
> signing or other operations without a human present to poke it.  This
> rate-limits any malware attack greatly.  It also fits entirely into the USB
> port, so it effectively becomes part of the machine without having to open
> the case.  I want to use it with a password manager so that my real
> password never leaves the machine, and my real password can't be used to
> PWN my accounts, and my key-hashed password can't be generated without the
> key.

making something that small is also hard - it means some rather special chip 
packaging, you  can't use a standard contract manufacturer - you need volume 
to make something like that work commercially - interestingly the NXP chip is 
8051 based (but running a jvm) it's probably intended for smart cards so it 
will be available in novel (likely bare die) packaging options that allow one 
to do that sort of thing


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