Type of Document Thesis Author Glodek, William Author's Email Address email@example.com URN etd-04142008-170521 Title Using A Specialized Grammar to Generate Probable Passwords Degree Master of Science Department Computer Science, Department of Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Breno de Medeiros Committee Co-Chair Sudhir Aggarwal Committee Co-Chair Zhenhai Duan Committee Member Keywords
- Generate Passwords
Date of Defense 2008-04-09 Availability unrestricted AbstractThe most common method of preventing unauthorized access to digital information
is through the use of a password-based authentication system. The strength of
a password-based authentication system relies on a humans ability to generate a password
that is memorable but not easily guessed. Brute force techniques can be used
to break passwords through exhaustive search, but this may take an infeasible
amount of time. Dictionary attack techniques attempt to break passwords by
applying common password construction patterns to standard dictionaries.
These common strategies are often successful in breaking weak passwords,
but as computer users become more educated in secure computing practices,
these strategies may become less successful.
We have developed a novel password breaking strategy that uses known
passwords to develop a specialized grammar, which
can be used to generate probable passwords. The password generation
process uses a probabilistic approach to develop
grammars that measure the likely hood of a password structure. Passwords
are generated based on the probabilistic password structures.
In this thesis, we describe the development and implementation of the specialized
grammar and the generation of passwords. We also show that our probable password
generation strategy is more effective than current password breaking
utilities and provides a foundation for future research.
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