Saturday, March 26, 2011

Computer Security 3

Capabilities and access control lists

Within computer systems, two security models capable of enforcing privilege separation are access control lists (ACLs) and capability-based security. The semantics of ACLs have been proven to be insecure in many situations, e.g., the confused deputy problem. It has also been shown that the promise of ACLs of giving access to an object to only one person can never be guaranteed in practice. Both of these problems are resolved by capabilities. This does not mean practical flaws exist in all ACL-based systems, but only that the designers of certain utilities must take responsibility to ensure that they do not introduce flaws.
Capabilities have been mostly restricted to research operating systems and commercial OSs still use ACLs. Capabilities can, however, also be implemented at the language level, leading to a style of programming that is essentially a refinement of standard object-oriented design. An open source project in the area is the E language.
First the Plessey System 250 and then Cambridge CAP computer demonstrated the use of capabilities, both in hardware and software, in the 1970s. A reason for the lack of adoption of capabilities may be that ACLs appeared to offer a 'quick fix' for security without pervasive redesign of the operating system and hardware.
The most secure computers are those not connected to the Internet and shielded from any interference. In the real world, the most security comes from operating systems where security is not an add-on.


Computer security is critical in almost any technology-driven industry which operates on computer systems. Computer security can also be referred to as computer safety. The issues of computer based systems and addressing their countless vulnerabilities are an integral part of maintaining an operational industry.

Cloud computing Security

Security in the cloud is challenging, due to varied degree of security features and management schemes within the cloud entitites. In this connection one logical protocol base need to evolve so that the entire gamet of components operates synchronously and securely.

In aviation

The aviation industry is especially important when analyzing computer security because the involved risks include human life, expensive equipment, cargo, and transportation infrastructure. Security can be compromised by hardware and software malpractice, human error, and faulty operating environments. Threats that exploit computer vulnerabilities can stem from sabotage, espionage, industrial competition, terrorist attack, mechanical malfunction, and human error.
The consequences of a successful deliberate or inadvertent misuse of a computer system in the aviation industry range from loss of confidentiality to loss of system integrity, which may lead to more serious concerns such as data theft or loss, network and air traffic controloutages, which in turn can lead to airport closures, loss of aircraft, loss of passenger life. Military systems that control munitions can pose an even greater risk.
A proper attack does not need to be very high tech or well funded; for a power outage at an airport alone can cause repercussions worldwide.[5] One of the easiest and, arguably, the most difficult to trace security vulnerabilities is achievable by transmitting unauthorized communications over specific radio frequencies. These transmissions may spoof air traffic controllers or simply disrupt communications altogether. These incidents are very common, having altered flight courses of commercial aircraft and caused panic and confusion in the past. Controlling aircraft over oceans is especially dangerous because radar surveillance only extends 175 to 225 miles offshore. Beyond the radar's sight controllers must rely on periodic radio communications with a third party.
Lightning, power fluctuations, surges, brown-outs, blown fuses, and various other power outages instantly disable all computer systems, since they are dependent on an electrical source. Other accidental and intentional faults have caused significant disruption of safety critical systems throughout the last few decades and dependence on reliable communication and electrical power only jeopardizes computer safety.

Notable system accidents

In 1994, over a hundred intrusions were made by unidentified crackers into the Rome Laboratory, the US Air Force's main command and research facility. Using trojan horse viruses, hackers were able to obtain unrestricted access to Rome's networking systems and remove traces of their activities. The intruders were able to obtain classified files, such as air tasking order systems data and furthermore able to penetrate connected networks of National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Goddard Space Flight Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, some Defense contractors, and other private sector organizations, by posing as a trusted Rome center user.

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