Blockchain-Based Certificate Transparency and Revocation Transparency

  • Ze Wang
  • Jingqiang LinEmail author
  • Quanwei Cai
  • Qiongxiao Wang
  • Jiwu Jing
  • Daren Zha
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10958)


Traditional X.509 public key infrastructures (PKIs) depend on certification authorities (CAs) to sign certificates, used in SSL/TLS to authenticate web servers and establish secure channels. However, recent security incidents indicate that CAs may (be compromised to) sign fraudulent certificates. In this paper, we propose blockchain-based certificate transparency and revocation transparency. Our scheme is compatible with X.509 PKIs but significantly reinforces the security guarantees of a certificate. The CA-signed certificates and their revocation status information of an SSL/TLS web server are published by the subject (i.e., the web server) as a transaction, and miners of the community append it to the global certificate blockchain after verifying the transaction and mining a block. The certificate blockchain acts as append-only public logs to monitor CAs’ certificate signing and revocation operations, and an SSL/TLS web server is granted with the cooperative control on its certificates to balance the absolute authority of CAs in traditional PKIs. We implement the prototype system with Firefox and Nginx, and the experimental results show that it introduces reasonable overheads.


PKI SSL TLS Blockchain Transparency Trust 


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Copyright information

© International Financial Cryptography Association 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ze Wang
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Jingqiang Lin
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    Email author
  • Quanwei Cai
    • 1
    • 2
  • Qiongxiao Wang
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Jiwu Jing
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Daren Zha
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Information Security, Institute of Information EngineeringChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.Data Assurance and Communication Security Research CenterChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.School of Cyber SecurityUniversity of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina

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