Versatile key management for secure cloud storage
2012, Graf, Sebastian, Lang, Patrick, Hohenadel, Stefan, Waldvogel, Marcel
Not only does storing data in the cloud utilize specialized infrastructures facilitating immense scalability and high availability, but it also offers a convenient way to share any information with user-defined third-parties. However, storing data on the infrastructure of commercial third party providers, demands trust and confidence. Simple approaches, like merely encrypting the data by providing encryption keys, which at most consist of a shared secret supporting rudimentary data sharing, do not support evolving sets of accessing clients to common data. Based on approaches from the area of stream-encryption, we propose an adaption for enabling scalable and flexible key management within heterogeneous environments like cloud scenarios. Representing access-rights as a graph, we distinguish between the keys used for encrypting hierarchical data and the encrypted updates on the keys enabling flexible join-/leave- operations of clients. This distinction allows us to utilize the high availability of the cloud as updating mechanism without harming confidentiality. Our graph-based key management results in an adaption of nodes related to the changed key. The updates on the keys again continuously create an overhead related to the number of these updated nodes. The proposed scalable approach utilizes cloud-based infrastructures for confidential data and key sharing in collaborative workflows supporting variable client-sets.