Tangible Security Project (TanSec)

TanSec aims to provide a simple to use, secure communication path between a smartphone/tablet/laptop outside the home (on 4G or on another WiFi) and in-home equipment such as home computers, IoT devices and new personal data platforms such as Databox. The goal is to avoid sending data via cloud services when it is not necessary, as they act as a surveillance point by the operator (and bring with them GDPR compliances costs), an attractive target for hackers and and a single point of attack for a denial of service.

This is achieved by using a standard VPN protocol, but, as most VPN solutions have been developed for the enterprise market, their setup, configuration and maintenance is not appropriate for domestic consumers. We have selected to use Wireguard, with our research focussed on ease of setup for this domestic market. To achieve this we are investigating a range of physical and located interaction designs for the Wireguard initial key exchange which will be evaluated with prospective users.

We have completed our initial review report, have a blog post discussing the setup and are proceeding to implementation and evaluation of the of the “tangible” key exchange interactions between mobile devices and an OpenWRT based domestic router.

The Tangible Security Project (TanSec) is funded by the PETRAS National Centre of Excellence for IoT Systems Cybersecurity