CLOUD 2021
Conference paper

Integrity Protection for Kubernetes Resource Based on Digital Signature

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Integrity of the cloud is the most important requirement for mission-critical enterprise workloads. NIST SP 800-53 states that information systems must prevent the installation of any components that have not been verified digitally with a signed certificate that is recognized and approved by the organization's information system. On a Kubernetes cluster, the admission controller can control requests for application installation, and it would be a powerful protection tool if it could control requests for Kubernetes resources based on signature verification. However, there are various technical challenges when it comes to verifying the signature for a Kubernetes resource at the admission controller because a signed resource is rewritten automatically by internal cluster work and many requests that include internal mutation without a signature are generated. In this work, we propose an approach to protect the integrity of a Kubernetes resource with signature verification at the admission controller. Our approach addresses the issue that the differences between the signed resource in the admission request and the signature message occur automatically in Kubernetes and conducts signature verification properly by using Dry Run. We also propose a profile framework to address the internal mutation request that cannot be attached to the signature. Our experimental results demonstrate that standard applications can be protected by our approach.


01 Sep 2021


CLOUD 2021