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There are increasing capabilities and demands for the remote monitoring of homes and their occupants. There are a variety of options for the architecture of such monitoring systems entailing trade-offs between privacy, security, cost, manageability and other factors. This paper considers the virtues of building Monitoring Service Providers (MSPs) based on the concept of a common carrier. The goal is to provide policy to support monitoring with limited risk to the monitored parties, the users of their data, and the MSP. The authors argue that advances in distributed computing, cryptography, and trusted computing provide enabling contributions to building practical Common Carrier MSPs (CCMSPs). This paper illustrates this with discussions of applications in the areas of assisted living and electrical power metering.
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