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Showing posts with the label TLS

Server Name Indication (SNI)

TLS does not provide a mechanism for a client to tell a server the name of the server it is contacting. It may be desirable for clients to provide this information to facilitate secure connections to servers that host multiple 'virtual' servers at a single underlying network address. For taking care of this issue, SNI extension has been added into the TLS and published in RFC 6066 . Or to explain it in other words, Name-based virtual hosting allows multiple DNS hostnames to be hosted by a single server (usually a web server) on the same IP address. To achieve this the server uses a hostname presented by the client as part of the protocol (for HTTP the name is presented in the host header). However, when using HTTPS the TLS handshake happens before the server sees any HTTP headers. Therefore, it is not possible for the server to use the information in the HTTP host header to decide which certificate to present. SNI addresses this issue by having the client send the name of

Cipher Suites

A cipher suite is a named combination of authentication , encryption , message authentication code (MAC) and key exchange algorithms used to negotiate the security settings for a network connection using the Transport Layer Security (TLS) / Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) network protocol. Usage When a TLS connection is established, a handshaking, known as the TLS Handshake Protocol, occurs. Within this handshake, a client hello (ClientHello) and a server hello (ServerHello) message are passed. First, the client sends a cipher suite list, a list of the cipher suites that it supports, in order of preference. Then the server replies with the cipher suite that it has selected from the client cipher suite list. Description of Algorithms In cryptography, a  message authentication code (MAC)  is a short piece of information used to authenticate a message and to provide integrity and authenticity assurances on the message. A MAC algorithm, accepts as input a secret key and an arbi