MASc Seminar Notice - An Implementation of 5G-AKA and a Usability Analysis of OpenLDAP Access Control Lists (ACLs)

Wednesday, August 11, 2021 1:00 pm - 1:00 pm EDT (GMT -04:00)

Candidate: Rahul Punchhi

Title: An Implementation of 5G-AKA and a Usability Analysis of OpenLDAP Access Control Lists (ACLs)

Date: August 11, 2021

Time: 1:00 PM

Place: Remote

Supervisor(s): Tripunitara, Mahesh - Rosenberg, Catherine


In this seminar, we address two pieces of work:  (i) an implementation of the Authentication and Key Agreement protocol suite from the 5th generation cellular communications standards (5G-AKA) that we intend to make available as open-source, and, (ii) a categorization using Hierarchical Task Analysis (HTA) of errors made by human participants in a study carried out on the usability of Access Control Lists (ACLs) in the OpenLDAP directory.

Our work (i) on 5G-AKA is motivated by the lack of availability of such an implementation that can then be used by researchers and practitioners for further work. We discuss design choices we have made; for example, our choice of the Java programming language and cryptographic packages, and our choice to model the three entities that communicate using 5G-AKA, the User Equipment (UE), the Serving Network (SN), and the Home Network (HN) as three distinct processes that communicate over TCP sockets. We also discuss challenges we encountered in carrying out our work, and the manner in which we plan to make our work available as open-source.

Our work (ii) on error-identification in the use of ACLs in OpenLDAP is part of a broader human-subject study that, in turn, is motivated by public pronouncements of their poor usability. We discuss what HTAs are, and why they are appropriate for our work.

We present our design of the HTAs, the errors we identified using them, and observe that this work helps with a prospective re-design of ACLs for OpenLDAP.