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Securing distributed communications from malicious tampering is of capital importance. There exist a number of techniques addressing this issue but, to the best of our knowledge, an account for what information assurance means in this context is currently unavailable. A notion is advanced in this paper reducing information assurance for secure distributed communications to a threefold requirement for the protocols securing the communications. The protocols ought to be analysed accurately, realistically and formally. General considerations and specific examples are presented to enlighten the intuitive meaning of these terms exhaustively. This contribution aims at drawing attention to an important niche in computer security.