W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-webappsec@w3.org > January 2016

Re: Proposal: Marking HTTP As Non-Secure

From: Eric Mill <eric@konklone.com>
Date: Sat, 30 Jan 2016 23:52:51 -0800
Message-ID: <CANBOYLWZ-81Fn216rAFyxKX_ruhHoK0LMYmsttyhThHzem8CJg@mail.gmail.com>
To: Eitan Adler <lists@eitanadler.com>
Cc: richard@leapbeyond.com, Security-dev <security-dev@chromium.org>, "public-webappsec@w3.org" <public-webappsec@w3.org>, blink-dev <blink-dev@chromium.org>, "mozilla-dev-security@lists.mozilla.org" <dev-security@lists.mozilla.org>
> On 29 January 2016 at 13:09,  <richard@leapbeyond.com> wrote:
> > There is little inherently "broken" about HTTP (without the "S").  It
> has security limitations which it's audience accepts.  Over the years
> people have been trained to look for proactive signs of security (https,
> green lock, etc) when they are doing activities that are sensitive (email,
> banking transactions, etc).

Also, "email" only in the last several years hit the point where it was
generally considered "sensitive" and encrypted by default.

And it was Google then who led by enforcing HTTPS for Gmail in early 2010:

Most other companies didn't move until the potential dangers were made more
viscerally real to them with Firesheep, which came out in October 2010.

And so now email is "sensitive" because of a combination of proactive and
reactive leadership that changed the status quo. I don't remember feeling
annoyed or worried about my webmail being served over plain HTTP in 2008. I
didn't "accept" the security limitations -- I didn't understand them. Other
people had to realize on my behalf that I was in danger, and I am glad that
they did.

You may personally accept HTTP's security limitations, but that doesn't
mean anyone is obligated to serve you plain HTTP, and it doesn't mean
anyone ethically has to refrain from strongly incentivizing websites to
give users the security they deserve.

-- Eric

> There is a ton of UI/UX research that people do not notice the absence
> of positive indicators.  One can train as much as they want, but the
> training has not worked to date.
> --
> Eitan Adler
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Received on Sunday, 31 January 2016 07:53:59 UTC

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