Professor tossing 'active cookies' at security threats

An Indiana University scientist is behind a new company exploiting cookie technology to protect Web users from identity theft and other online threats.

Markus Jacobsson, associate professor of informatics and associate director of the Indiana University Center for Applied Cybersecurity Research, is promoting the new security technique through a startup called RavenWhite that he founded with Ari Juels, manager and principal research scientist at RSA Laboratories.

Their "active cookie" technique is designed to protect end users with PCs, laptops or mobile devices in a way that traditional cookies cannot (cookies are information stored on an end-user device that identify that system during initial and repeat visits to a Web site).

"While cookies were merely designed to identify users, active cookies are designed to authenticate users," according to the company Web site.

Jakobsson says active cookies protect against such domain spoofing threats as pharming, where end users are scammed by being directed to a bogus Web site. The active cookies are designed to protect against newer threats, such as a technique for hijacking Wi-Fi connections and redirecting end users to suspect sites without them ever knowing.

The company says its basic technology will not protect an end user who shifts from computer to computer or reconfigures his or her browser. But the company is working on server-side technology to try to combat that shortcoming, such as by providing administrators with more challenging questions with which to authenticate end users.

For a deeper explanation of active cookies, read the whitepapers at RavenWhite's site at http://www.ravenwhite.com/whitepapers.html.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Bob Brown

Network World (US online)

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?