Using a key past its expiration date

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This is a Vulnerability. To view all vulnerabilities, please see the Vulnerability Category page.



Last revision (mm/dd/yy): 05/27/2009

Vulnerabilities Table of Contents

Description

The use of a cryptographic key or password past its expiration date diminishes its safety significantly.

Consequences

Authentication: The cryptographic key in question may be compromised, providing a malicious user with a method for authenticating as the victim.

Exposure period

  • Design: The handling of key expiration should be considered during the design phase - largely pertaining to user interface design.
  • Run time: Users are largely responsible for the use of old keys.

Platform

  • Languages: All
  • Platforms: All

Required resources

Any

Severity

Low

Likelihood of exploit

Low

While the expiration of keys does not necessarily ensure that they are compromised, it is a significant concern that keys which remain in use for prolonged periods of time have a decreasing probability of integrity.

For this reason, it is important to replace keys within a period of time proportional to their strength.


Risk Factors

TBD

Examples

In C/C++:

if (!(cert = SSL_get_peer(certificate(ssl)) || !host)
  foo=SSL_get_veryify_result(ssl);
  if ((X509_V_OK==foo) || (X509_V_ERRCERT_NOT_YET_VALID==foo))
//do stuff 


Related Attacks


Related Vulnerabilities


Related Controls

  • Design: Adequate consideration should be put in to the user interface in order to notify users prior to the key's expiration, to explain the importance of new key generation, and to walk users through the process as painlessly as possible.
  • Run time: Users must heed warnings and generate new keys and passwords when they expire.

Related Technical Impacts


References

TBD