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We are interested in applying model checking techniques to the verification of communication protocols that require safe communication. Typically, in such scenarios, one desires to demonstrate that one party can reliably communicate information to another party without a third party being able to determine this information. Our approach involves using the modal logic of knowledge, which has only relatively recently been studied in the context of security protocols. We demonstrate our approach by means of a detailed case study: the Russian cards problem. This is an example of a security protocol with nontrivial requirements on the knowledge of the agents involved. Using the Russian cards problem as an example, it is shown how the satisfaction of properties involving knowledge can be verified in a standard model checker, which in our case is SPIN.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Computer Science, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, United Kingdom

Publication date: 01 October 2004

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