SPIE Defense + Security 2014
Conference paper

Fine-grained policy control in U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) multimodal signatures database

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The U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) Multimodal Signatures Database (MMSDB) consists of a number of colocated relational databases representing a collection of data from various sensors. Role-based access to this data is granted to external organizations such as DoD contractors and other government agencies through a client Web portal. In the current MMSDB system, access control is only at the database and firewall level. In order to offer finer grained security, changes to existing user profile schemas and authentication mechanisms are usually needed. In this paper, we describe a software middleware architecture and implementation that allows fine-grained access control to the MMSDB at a dataset, table, and row level. Result sets from MMSDB queries issued in the client portal are filtered with the use of a policy enforcement proxy, with minimal changes to the existing client software and database. Before resulting data is returned to the client, policies are evaluated to determine if the user or role is authorized to access the data. Policies can be authored to filter data at the row, table or column level of a result set. The system uses various technologies developed in the International Technology Alliance in Network and Information Science (ITA) for policy-controlled information sharing and dissemination1. Use of the Policy Management Library provides a mechanism for the management and evaluation of policies to support finer grained access to the data in the MMSDB system. The GaianDB is a policy-enabled, federated database that acts as a proxy between the client application and the MMSDB system. © 2014 SPIE.