21 September 2020
PEM is a file format that typically contains a certificate or private/public keys. PEM files have had patchy support in Windows and .NET but are the norm for other platforms. However, starting with .NET 5, .NET now has out of the box support for parsing certificates and keys from PEM files.
This article will show you how to manually load a PEM file in .NET Core 3.1 (the old way) and how to do the same using the new .NET 5 APIs.You’ll also see how to use PEM certificates for Kestrel TLS.
20 August 2020
This year, I had the pleasure of (virtually) speaking at NDC Oslo. While it would have been great to present at the Oslo Spectrum, I still got the chance to talk about my recent work with FIDO2 and WebAuthn, which resulted in the creation of FIDO2 for ASP.NET.
If you want to learn more about how user authentication works on the web and how I think FIDO2 is going to be the solution to many of our issues, then check out my talk below.
18 August 2020
JSON Web Tokens (JWTs) can be signed using many different algorithms: RS256, PS512, ES384, HS1; you can see why some developers scratch their heads when asked which one they would like to use.
In my experience, many of the mainstream identity providers have historically only offered RS256 or at least defaulted to it. However, thanks to initiatives such as Open Banking, these identity providers are now expanding their support to cover more signing algorithms, which means you will need to start understanding which ones to use.
05 August 2020
Creating a private key for token signing doesn’t need to be a mystery. Recently, I wrote about using OpenSSL to create keys suitable for Elliptical Curve Cryptography (ECC), and in this article, I am going to show you how to do the same for RSA private and public keys, suitable for signature generation with RSASSA-PKCS1-v1_5 and RSASSA-PSS.
30 July 2020
Last week, I attended the 5th OAuth Security Workshop (OSW), a workshop where people working with OAuth can meet up and talk about anything related to OAuth security for 3-4 days.
This was my first time attending the OSW, so I thought I would share a few of my highlights and help raise awareness of the event.
22 July 2020
By default, IdentityServer4 uses RS256 to sign identity tokens and JWT access tokens; however, it does also support Elliptical Curve Cryptography (ECC). Using Elliptical Curve Digital Signing Algorithms (ECDSA) such as ES256 does have some benefits over RSA, such as shorter signature and smaller keys while providing the same level of security.
In this article, I am going to show you how to use ES256 to sign JWTs in IdentityServer4 and then how to use it alongside RS256 for backward compatibility. I contributed some of the code around ECDSA in IdentityServer4, so I figure it is time to write about it 🙂.
20 July 2020
Recently, I have been using OpenSSL to generate private keys and X509 certificates for Elliptical Curve Cryptography (ECC) and then using them in ASP.NET Core for token signing.
In this article, I’m going to show you how to use OpenSSL to generate private and public keys on the curve of your choice.
10 July 2020
Tailwind is a utility-first CSS framework that one of my colleagues has been advocating internally at Rock Solid Knowledge for some time. After using Bootstrap’s utility classes on my own website, I’m finally sold on the benefits of using utility classes for web design.
Bootstrap’s utility classes are relatively basic, and I soon became jealous of some of the utility classes found in Tailwind, especially the ability to prefix any utility class with a breakpoint name (e.g.
01 June 2020
Edwards-curve Digital Signing Algorithm (EdDSA) is the new hotness in digital signing algorithms. From what I’ve seen, it’s the current recommendation from the cryptography community and generally preferred over your typical Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm (ECDSA).
I’ve had a few chances to play with EdDSA as part of my work with FIDO2 and PASETO, so I’m going to solidify that by writing up my high-level understanding of EdDSA, how to use EdDSA in .NET with Bouncy Castle, and how to sign a JWT with EdDSA using ScottBrady.IdentityModel.
12 May 2020
In my previous article I discussed the criticisms surrounding JSON Web Tokens (JWTs) and some of their alternatives. Some of these alternatives had merits, however, many of the implementations that I found neglected to include the payload validation that we are used to in JWT libraries.
I’ve implemented some of these JWT alternatives as a side project, with a focus on including JWT payload validation. Thankfully, the
Microsoft.IdentityModel libraries were extensible enough for me to build on top of the existing JWT validators. This means that protecting your APIs with PASETO can look as simple as...