Abstract by Danny Allen

Personal Infomation

Presenter's Name

Danny Allen

Degree Level


Abstract Infomation


Computer Science

Faculty Advisor

Kent Seamons
Casey Deccio


Analyzing Handshake - a blockchain-based supplement to DNS


The Domain Name System (DNS) and Certificate Authorities (CAs) play vital roles in securing the Internet; unfortunately, their centralized models make them potential targets for actors aiming to undermine Internet security.  The Handshake protocol was designed to improve upon the security currently offered by the DNS and CAs, by performing the same functions (and more) on a decentralized blockchain. My research represents the first formal measurement of participation on Handshake’s recently deactivated test network (testnet4).   Despite Handshake’s capacity to serve as a robust supplement to the existing Internet-security infrastructure, public experimentation with the protocol has been extremely limited and we find no evidence to suggest that the main network (mainnet) will achieve widespread adoption within its projected time frame.