PALPAS - PAsswordLess PAssword Synchronization
Authors: Moritz Horsch, Andreas Hülsing, Johannes Buchmann

Date: August 24 2015
Publication: Proceedings of the 2015 10th International Conference on Availability, Reliability and Security (ARES '15)
Page(s): 30 - 39
Publisher: IEEE
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Abstract or Summary:
Tools that synchronize passwords over several user devices typically store the encrypted passwords in a central online database. For encryption, a low-entropy, password-based key is used. Such a database may be subject to unauthorized access which can lead to the disclosure of all passwords by an offline brute-force attack. In this paper, we present PALPAS, a secure and user-friendly tool that synchronizes passwords between user devices without storing information about them centrally. The idea of PALPAS is to generate a password from a high entropy secret shared by all devices and a random salt value for each service. Only the salt values are stored on a server but not the secret. The salt enables the user devices to generate the same password but is statistically independent of the password. In order for PALPAS to generate passwords according to different password policies, we also present a mechanism that automatically retrieves and processes the password requirements of services. PALPAS users need to only memorize a single password and the setup of PALPAS on a further device demands only a one-time transfer of few static data. Note: Project page:

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