Strong accountability for network storage
This article presents the design, implementation, and evaluation of CATS, a network storage service with strong accountability properties. CATS offers a simple web services interface that allows clients to read and write opaque objects of variable size. This interface is similar to the one offered by existing commercial Internet storage services. CATS extends the functionality of commercial Internet storage services by offering support for strong accountability. A CATS server annotates read and write responses with evidence of correct execution, and offers audit and challenge interfaces that enable clients to verify that the server is faithful. A faulty server cannot conceal its misbehavior, and evidence of misbehavior is independently verifiable by any participant. CATS clients are also accountable for their actions on the service. A client cannot deny its actions, and the server can prove the impact of those actions on the state views it presented to other clients. Experiments with a CATS prototype evaluate the cost of accountability under a range of conditions and expose the primary factors influencing the level of assurance and the performance of a strongly accountable storage server. The results show that strong accountability is practical for network storage systems in settings with strong identity and modest degrees of write-sharing. We discuss how the accountability concepts and techniques used in CATS generalize to other classes of network services. © 2007 ACM.
Yumerefendi, AR; Chase, JS
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