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A public key infrastructure (PKI) must provide the mechanisms for assuring secure transactions and high reliability of its services. The use of public key cryptography satisfies the first requirement, while the second has been traditionally satisfied by the use of distributed architectures, among these the autonomous decentralized systems (ADS) are specially interesting since can provide on line expandability, maintenance and fault tolerance; however, the implementation of a PKI based on ADS rise new challenges, among the most important are: how to assure the uniqueness of public keys in such system and, since ADS architectures usually rely on specialized hardware for their implementation, how to implement such architecture without that specialized hardware. This paper explores the use of an ADS architecture based on software in order to provide high reliability to a PKI, assuring the uniqueness of its public keys.
Date of Conference: 23-25 March 2009