Visible to the public Biblio

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2020-01-21
Orellana, Cristian, Villegas, Mónica M., Astudillo, Hernán.  2019.  Mitigating Security Threats through the Use of Security Tactics to Design Secure Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS). Proceedings of the 13th European Conference on Software Architecture - Volume 2. :109–115.
Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) attract growing interest from architects and attackers, given their potential effect on privacy and safety of ecosystems and users. Architectural tactics have been proposed as a design-time abstraction useful to guide and evaluate systems design decisions that address specific system qualities, but there is little published evidence of how Security Tactics help to mitigate security threats in the context of Cyber-Physical Systems. This article reports the principled derivation of architectural tactics for an actual SCADA-SAP bridge, where security was the key concern; the key inputs were (1) a well-known taxonomies of architectural tactics, and (2) a detailed record of trade-offs among these tactics. The project architects used client-specified quality attributes to identify relevant tactics in the taxonomy, and information on their trade-offs to guide top-level decisions on system global shape. We venture that all architectural tactics taxonomies should be enriched with explicit trade-offs, allowing architects to compare alternative solutions that seem equally good on principle but are not so in practice.
2019-10-22
Hagan, Matthew, Siddiqui, Fahad, Sezer, Sakir.  2018.  Policy-Based Security Modelling and Enforcement Approach for Emerging Embedded Architectures. 2018 31st IEEE International System-on-Chip Conference (SOCC). :84–89.
Complex embedded systems often contain hard to find vulnerabilities which, when exploited, have potential to cause severe damage to the operating environment and the user. Given that threats and vulnerabilities can exist within any layer of the complex eco-system, OEMs face a major challenge to ensure security throughout the device life-cycle To lower the potential risk and damage that vulnerabilities may cause, OEMs typically perform application threat analysis and security modelling. This process typically provides a high level guideline to solving security problems which can then be implemented during design and development. However, this concept presents issues where new threats or unknown vulnerability has been discovered. To address this issue, we propose a policy-based security modelling approach, which utilises a configurable policy engine to apply new policies that counter serious threats. By utilising this approach, the traditional security modelling approaches can be enhanced and the consequences of a new threat greatly reduced. We present a realistic use case of connected car, applying several attack scenarios. By utilising STRIDE threat modelling and DREAD risk assessment model, adequate policies are derived to protect the car assets. This approach poses advantages over the standard approach, allowing a policy update to counter a new threat, which may have otherwise required a product redesign to alleviate the issue under the traditional approach.