Title: A secure framework for publishing virtual community contracts

Authors: Anna Cinzia Squicciarini, Federica Paci, Elisa Bertino

Addresses: Dipartimento di Informatica e Comunicazione, Universita degli Studi di Milano, Via Comelico, 39–20135 Milano, Italy. ' Dipartimento di Informatica e Comunicazione, Universita degli Studi di Milano, Via Comelico, 39–20135 Milano, Italy. ' Cerias and CS Department, Purdue University, 656 Oval Drive, West Lafayette, IN 47907–2086, USA

Abstract: The notion of Virtual Community (VC) is today an important paradigm to enable dynamic and large-scale collaboration activities over the web. In many of those activities, security is an important key requirement that to date has not been widely investigated. In this paper, we make a step towards addressing such a problem. We focus on the issue of secure publishing of VC policies because policies represent a key component for any VC. Their security is thus crucial for the proper functioning of the VC. In the paper, after discussing the motivation for the proposed work, we develop protocols for the secure publication of protocols addressing the integrity and confidentiality of the policy publication process. Our protocols cover both community policies and community member local policies. Our approach relies on the use of a system specifically designed for secure and selective dissemination of XML documents. We also provide a sketch of the system implementing the framework and the XML encoding of the documents to be exchanged, and show the computational results of the implemented algorithms.

Keywords: virtual community; web based communities; online communities; contracts; obligation; secure distribution; policy publishing; security; integrity; confidentiality; protocols; XML; document exchange; community policies; member policies.

DOI: 10.1504/IJWBC.2006.010312

International Journal of Web Based Communities, 2006 Vol.2 No.2, pp.237 - 255

Available online: 13 Jul 2006 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article