Strategies for Building Robust Security
The four W's of security help us define the outline of what end-to-end security may entail. End-to-end security requires a proactive approachthe essential security strategies and decisions for the application must be made and adopted during the design and architecture phases, not at the time of deployment. Security by default mechanisms must be implemented by using a structured methodology, patterns-driven design, adoption of best practices, risk verification through reality checks, and proactive assessment of deployment architecture. The robustness of security also needs to be enhanced by using defensive strategies, security profiling, and security recovery and continuity strategies.
Let's take a look at some of the concepts and strategies that contribute to building robust security architecture and design.
Unified Process for Security Design
Unified Process (UP) is the de facto standard for the software application development process. It addresses all disciplines of the application development life cyclefrom requirements gathering to deployment. In addition, it provides a set of supporting disciplines such as configuration management, project management, environment, operations, and support. However, it does not have specific guidelines for security. It would be extremely useful if security design principles were incorporated as a discipline in the UP-based application development life cycle. Chapter 8, "The Alchemy of Security DesignMethodology, Patterns, and Reality Checks," introduces such a UP-based security design methodology.
A design pattern is a reusable solution to a recurring design problem. Design patterns are usually
Best practices are selected principles and guidelines derived from real-world experience that have been identified by industry experts as
Reality checks are a collection of review items used to identify specific application behavior. They assist in the analysis of whether the applied design principles are practicable,
Proactive assessment is a process of using existing security knowledge and experience and then applying it in order to prevent the same problems from recurring. It also predicts what is likely to occur if preventive measures are not implemented.
A complementary strategy to proactive assessment is security profiling and optimization. Using featured tools, it helps in identifying risks and vulnerabilities and in verifying
Defensive strategies are a set of proactive and reactive actions that thwart security breaches. They are usually represented by a plan of action that helps to identify and restrict a security violation earlywhile it is still at a low level. These strategies should present explicit instructions for their use and should also present instructions for use when a low-level breach is missed and the attack has progressed to a higher level.
Recovery and Continuity Strategies
Despite the presence of proactive assessment and defensive strategies, there are still unknown security issues that one may encounter. These can cause serious application failures and service shutdown. It is therefore important to have a recovery and continuity plan for those services that support recovery and business continuity. A comprehensive recovery and continuity plan can reduce operational risks by reducing downtime.