[mail-vet-discuss] Authentication vs. Authorization
chl at clerew.man.ac.uk
Thu Oct 30 04:29:28 PDT 2008
On Fri, 24 Oct 2008 17:10:14 +0100, Murray S. Kucherawy <msk at sendmail.com>
> An issue has been raised regarding the name of the proposed header
> field. Some of the methods supported by the draft are specifically
> message authorization and not authentication (e.g. SPF, Sender-ID) and
> there's a concern that this might mislead some consumers of the header
> field's contents. Do others concur, or is it not something about which
> to be concerned?
Having read all of this discussion, I conclude that "Authentication" is
actually the *correct* term for what this header does.
"Authentication" is a statement of assurance about some particular aspect
of the provenance of a message.
"This is an authentic Ebay message"
"It is authenticated that this message came from an Ebay IP address"
"It is authenticated that this message passed through X during transit"
"It is authenticated that such and such a header was added by X"
All these are saying different things about the provenance of the message.
The only thing they have in common is that the statement being made has
been verified by some technical means.
None of them says *anything* about "authorization" (though that may be
implied by secondary information available from elsewhere, such as ADSP
So the name of the header is correct. Adding further parameters to it
might or might not be appropriate (for example a parameter that indicated
some associated ADSP status, to save the recipient from looking it up
> Perhaps we could take advantage of a lexical coincidence and rename it
> to "Auth-Results", specifying in the draft that it covers both
> authentication results and authorization results. Would that work?
No, because that introduced "Author" into the possible
Charles H. Lindsey ---------At Home, doing my own thing------------------------
Tel: +44 161 436 6131
Email: chl at clerew.man.ac.uk Snail: 5 Clerewood Ave, CHEADLE, SK8 3JU, U.K.
PGP: 2C15F1A9 Fingerprint: 73 6D C2 51 93 A0 01 E7 65 E8 64 7E 14 A4 AB A5
More information about the mail-vet-discuss