Access Control: Policies, Models, and Mechanisms

Topics: Access control / Pages: 141 (27400 words) / Published: Oct 26th, 2014
Access Control: Policies, Models, and
Pierangela Samarati1 and Sabrina de Capitani di Vimercati2

Dipartimento di Tecnologie dell’Informazione, Universit` a di Milano
Via Bramante 65, 26013 Crema (CR), Italy
Dip. di Elettronica per l’Automazione, Universit` a di Brescia
Via Branze 38, 25123 Brescia, Italy

Abstract. Access control is the process of mediating every request to resources and data maintained by a system and determining whether the request should be granted or denied. The access control decision is enforced by a mechanism implementing regulations established by a security policy. Different access control policies can be applied, corresponding to different criteria for defining what should, and what should not, be allowed, and, in some sense, to different definitions of what ensuring security means. In this chapter we investigate the basic concepts behind access control design and enforcement, and point out different security requirements that may need to be taken into consideration. We discuss several access control policies, and models formalizing them, that have been proposed in the literature or that are currently under investigation.



An important requirement of any information management system is to protect data and resources against unauthorized disclosure (secrecy) and unauthorized or improper modifications (integrity), while at the same time ensuring their availability to legitimate users (no denials-of-service). Enforcing protection therefore requires that every access to a system and its resources be controlled and that all and only authorized accesses can take place. This process goes under the name of access control . The development of an access control system requires the definition of the regulations according to which access is to be controlled and their

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