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Usable Secure Email Communications - Criteria and evaluation of existing approaches

Moecke, Cristian Thiago and Volkamer, Melanie (2012):
Usable Secure Email Communications - Criteria and evaluation of existing approaches.
In: Information and Computer Security, pp. 75-85, DOI: 10.1108/09685221311314419,
[Article]

Abstract

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Purpose</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;Email communication has been used for many years, and has begun to replace traditional, physical correspondence more and more. Compared to a traditional postal service, email services are easier, faster, and free of charge. Standard email, however, is, from a security point of view, more comparable to post cards than letters. Some security techniques and services exist, but few people use them due to lack of awareness, low usability, and a lack of understanding of Public Key Infrastructures (PKIs). A comprehensive comparison is missing, which makes it difficult for users to decide which email service to use. The purpose of this paper is to identify evaluation criteria covering security, usability, and interoperability aspects of email, and to apply them to existing email services.</div>

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><span style="color: rgb(32, 84, 136); "><a name="_i2"></a></span> <div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Design/methodology/approach</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;The authors first define criteria based on literature review, threat analysis and expert consultation. These criteria are then applied, when applicable, to existing approaches including DKIM, SPF, PGP, S/MIME and Opportunistic Encryption, and to common secure email providers including Gmail, Hushmail, and De‐Mail.</div>

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><span style="color: rgb(32, 84, 136); "><a name="_i3"></a></span> <div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Findings</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;None of the existing analysed services meets all the derived criteria. Based on the result of the application of these criteria and the corresponding comparison, the authors propose future directions for usable secure email communication.</div>

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><span style="color: rgb(32, 84, 136); "><a name="_i4"></a></span> <div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Originality/value</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;The criteria proposed are original and allow an evaluation and a comparison of different email systems that not only considers security aspects, but also the relation and trade‐offs between security, usability and interoperability. Moreover, the trust assumptions involved are also considered.</div>

Item Type: Article
Erschienen: 2012
Creators: Moecke, Cristian Thiago and Volkamer, Melanie
Title: Usable Secure Email Communications - Criteria and evaluation of existing approaches
Language: English
Abstract:

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Purpose</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;Email communication has been used for many years, and has begun to replace traditional, physical correspondence more and more. Compared to a traditional postal service, email services are easier, faster, and free of charge. Standard email, however, is, from a security point of view, more comparable to post cards than letters. Some security techniques and services exist, but few people use them due to lack of awareness, low usability, and a lack of understanding of Public Key Infrastructures (PKIs). A comprehensive comparison is missing, which makes it difficult for users to decide which email service to use. The purpose of this paper is to identify evaluation criteria covering security, usability, and interoperability aspects of email, and to apply them to existing email services.</div>

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><span style="color: rgb(32, 84, 136); "><a name="_i2"></a></span> <div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Design/methodology/approach</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;The authors first define criteria based on literature review, threat analysis and expert consultation. These criteria are then applied, when applicable, to existing approaches including DKIM, SPF, PGP, S/MIME and Opportunistic Encryption, and to common secure email providers including Gmail, Hushmail, and De‐Mail.</div>

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><span style="color: rgb(32, 84, 136); "><a name="_i3"></a></span> <div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Findings</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;None of the existing analysed services meets all the derived criteria. Based on the result of the application of these criteria and the corresponding comparison, the authors propose future directions for usable secure email communication.</div>

<div class="NLM_sec NLM_sec_level1" style="color: rgb(65, 65, 65); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, &quot;Arial Unicode MS&quot;, &quot;Trebuchet MS&quot;, sans-serif; "><span style="color: rgb(32, 84, 136); "><a name="_i4"></a></span> <div class="sectionInfo" style="overflow: hidden; "><div class="sectionHeading" style="float: left; font-size: 18px; "><h5 style="margin: 0px; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); text-rendering: optimizeLegibility; line-height: 18px; font-size: 12px; ">Originality/value</h5></div> <div class="sectionJumpTo" style="float: right; "></div></div> –&nbsp;The criteria proposed are original and allow an evaluation and a comparison of different email systems that not only considers security aspects, but also the relation and trade‐offs between security, usability and interoperability. Moreover, the trust assumptions involved are also considered.</div>

Journal or Publication Title: Information and Computer Security
Title of Book: Sixth International Symposium on Human Aspects of Information Security & Assurance (HAISA 2012)
ISBN: 978-1-84102-317-5
Uncontrolled Keywords: Security, Usability and Society;Secure Data
Divisions: 20 Department of Computer Science
20 Department of Computer Science > Theoretical Computer Science - Cryptography and Computer Algebra
20 Department of Computer Science > SECUSO - Security, Usability and Society
Profile Areas
Profile Areas > Cybersecurity (CYSEC)
LOEWE
LOEWE > LOEWE-Zentren
LOEWE > LOEWE-Zentren > CASED – Center for Advanced Security Research Darmstadt
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2016 18:35
DOI: 10.1108/09685221311314419
Identification Number: TUD-CS-2012-0057
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