Cloud computing enables highly scalable services to be easily consumed over the Internet on an as-needed basis. A major feature of the cloud services is that users' data are usually processed remotely in unknown machines that users do not own or operate. While enjoying the convenience brought by this new emerging technology, users' fears of losing control of their own data (particularly, financial and health data) can become a significant barrier to the wide adoption of cloud services. To address this problem, in this project, we propose a novel highly decentralized information accountability framework to keep track of the actual usage of the users' data in the cloud. Our proposed CIA framework provides end-toend accountability in a highly distributed fashion. One of the main innovative features of the CIA framework lies in its ability of maintaining lightweight and powerful accountability that combines aspects of access control, usage control and authentication In particular, we propose an object-centered approach that enables enclosing our logging mechanism together with users' data and policies. By means of the CIA, data owners can track not only whether or not the service-level agreements are being honored, but also enforce access and usage control rules as needed. Associated with the accountability feature, We leverage the JAR programmable capabilities to both create a dynamic and traveling object, and to ensure that any access to users' data will trigger authentication and automated logging local to the JARs. To strengthen user's control, we also provide distributed auditing mechanisms. We provide extensive experimental studies that demonstrate the efficiency and effectiveness of the proposed approaches.Cloud computing enables highly scalable services to be easily consumed over the Internet on an as-needed basis.
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