Panel: What Protocol Designers Need From Formal Methods

Catherine Meadows
Naval Research Laboratory, Code 5543
Washington, DC 20375

The past few years have seen a rapidly growing amount of research in the application of formal methods to the design and verification of cryptographic protocols. They have also seen an equally rapidly growing amount of work in developing and fielding cryptographic protocols, and a growing need for secure communication over the Internet. The problem of assuring the correctness of these protocols has been a matter of some concern, and this sparked interest in making use of the products of formal methods research. However, formal methods has traditionally been seen as an arcane field requiring special expertise, and for this reason difficult to transition into industry.

The purpose of a this panel is to examine the issues around the question of making formal methods for cryptographic protocol analysis into tools that can be used by developers. We have invited a panel of experts on cryptographic protocol development to talk about what they need and expect from formal methods tools and techniques, and in what direction they would like the field to be going. Some of the questions we will be considering are: