It looks like MS is going to be providing a key escrow service for
Vista Ultimate. If most of your clients are off domain, running
and you're willing to trust MS to hold your keys (that's a big if),
be an option for you.
More info on this feature is on the Vista Ultimate site:
bobdoyle () kellogg northwestern edu
Kellogg Information Systems
From: Gary Flynn [mailto:flynngn () JMU EDU]
Sent: Thursday, February 01, 2007 8:58 AM
Subject: Re: Vista
Mclaughlin, Kevin L (mclaugkl) wrote:
I was wondering what your approach or thoughts are surrounding:
We're still in the planning stages, but...
1.) key management of Vista's built in Encryption capability - are
you going to try and centralize key management via Active
just let each individual hold their own keys?
EFS - Join computers wanting to use EFS to a domain so a domain
recovery agent account is available. We're also looking
into Microsoft CA to automate key generation and backup
but at this point, the domain recovery agent is the
We'll also have documentation on handling the keys
manually with lots of warnings and caveats.
BitLocker - We're talking about joining all incoming Vista computers
to a domain with necessary schema changes to support
AD key storage. That schema change needs to be done
and the Vista computer joined to a domain before
BitLocker is enabled.
The majority of our computers are not in a Microsoft domain so we
have some challenges ahead not faced by many other organizations,...
political, logistical, and technical.
a. My concerns with individuals holding their own keys are:
if they get hit by a bus? What if we are asked by their Dean, the
local law enforcement to do a Forensic exam on their system?
That is why we're looking into centralized key backup/recovery
options. But encryption is not the only situation that raises
those issues. What if they lose their laptop? What if their disk
drive malfunctions making the data irretrievable? What if they
install PGP, Truecrypt, or any number of other encryption
packages on their own? What if they securely delete their
data? What if they refuse to turn over a laptop?
Backups are necessary to solve encryption and other data
recovery issues and backups raise their own security issues.
Policy surrounding encryption use is necessary but unless desktop
configuration is managed and enforced, it is still left up to
individual discretion. Education and awareness is probably key
to prevent problems caused by general ignorance of the issues.
2.) Are you going to establish a policy or guidelines that talk
Faculty and Staff key encryption key management responsibilities?
would you mind sharing such a policy with us?
I don't know about policy but we'll certainly have a whole lot of
warnings, caveats, and recommendations included with the
documentation for using the features.
James Madison University