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Updated March 2003

 

Hacking Exposed: Second Edition
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 Computer Security Basics

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 Information Security Management Handbook

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 The Information Systems Security Officer's Guide

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 Computer Security Handbook
(US only)

 

 

 

Orange Book Summary

Introduction

This document is a summary of the US Department of Defense Trusted Computer System Evaluation Criteria, known as the Orange Book. Although originally written for military systems, the security classifications are now broadly used within the computer industry, 

You can get further information on the Orange Book and Rainbow Series by looking at the Orange Book Links page. Example Operating System descriptions link to the NCSC Evaluated Products List.

The DoD security categories range from D (Minimal Protection) to A (Verified Protection).

D - Minimal Protection

Any system that does not comply to any other category, or has failed to receive a higher classification. D-level certification is very rare.

C - Discretionary Protection

Discretionary protection applies to Trusted Computer Bases (TCBs) with optional object (i.e. file, directory, devices etc.) protection.

C1 - Discretionary Security Protection

  • Discretionary Access Control, for example Access Control Lists (ACLs), User/Group/World protection.
  • Usually for users who are all on the same security level.
  • Username and Password protection and secure authorisations database (ADB).
  • Protected operating system and system operations mode.
  • Periodic integrity checking of TCB.
  • Tested security mechanisms with no obvious bypasses.
  • Documentation for User Security.
  • Documentation for Systems Administration Security.
  • Documentation for Security Testing.
  • TCB design documentation.
  • Typically for users on the same security level
  • C1 certification is rare. Example systems are earlier versions of Unix, IBM RACF.

C2 - Controlled Access Protection

As C1, plus
  • Object protection can be on a single-user basis, e.g. through an ACL or Trustee database.
  • Authorisation for access may only be assigned by authorised users.
  • Object reuse protection (i.e. to avoid reallocation of secure deleted objects).
  • Mandatory identification and authorisation procedures for users, e.g. Username/Password.
  • Full auditing of security events (i.e. date/time, event, user, success/failure, terminal ID)
  • Protected system mode of operation.
  • Added protection for authorisation and audit data.
  • Documentation as C1 plus information on examining audit information.
  • This is one of the most common certifications. Example Operating Systems are: VMS, IBM OS/400, Windows NT, Novell NetWare 4.11, Oracle 7, DG AOS/VS II.

B - Mandatory Protection

Division B specifies that the TCB protection systems should be mandatory, not discretionary.

B1 - Labelled Security Protection

As C2 plus:
  • Mandatory security and access labelling of all objects, e.g. files, processes, devices etc.
  • Label integrity checking (e.g. maintenance of sensitivity labels when data is exported).
  • Auditing of labelled objects.
  • Mandatory access control for all operations.
  • Ability to specify security level printed on human-readable output (e.g. printers).
  • Ability to specify security level on any machine-readable output.
  • Enhanced auditing.
  • Enhanced protection of Operating System.
  • Improved documentation.
  • Example OSes are: HP-UX BLS, Cray Research Trusted Unicos 8.0, Digital SEVMS, Harris CS/SX, SGI Trusted IRIX.

B2 - Structured Protection

As B1 plus:
  • Notification of security level changes affecting interactive users.
  • Hierarchical device labels.
  • Mandatory access over all objects and devices.
  • Trusted path communications between user and system.
  • Tracking down of covert storage channels.
  • Tighter system operations mode into multilevel independent units.
  • Covert channel analysis.
  • Improved security testing.
  • Formal models of TCB.
  • Version, update and patch analysis and auditing.
  • Example systems are: Honeywell Multics, Cryptek VSLAN, Trusted XENIX. 

B3 - Security Domains

As B2 plus:
  • ACLs additionally based on groups and identifiers.
  • Trusted path access and authentication.
  • Automatic security analysis.
  • TCB models more formal.
  • Auditing of security auditing events.
  • Trusted recovery after system down and relevant documentation.
  • Zero design flaws in TCB, and minimum implementation flaws.
  • The only B3-certified OS is Getronics/Wang Federal XTS-300.

A - Verified Protection

Division A is the highest security division.

A1 - Verified Protection

As B3 plus:

A2 and above

Provision is made for security levels higher than A2, although these have not yet been formally defined. No OSes are rated above A1.
 
Recommended titles at Amazon.com:
Hacking Exposed: Second Edition (US) / (UK)
Computer Security Basics (US) / (UK)
Information Security Management Handbook (US) / (UK)
The Information Systems Security Officer's Guide (US) / (UK)
Mastering Network Security (US) / (UK)
Computer Security Handbook (US only)

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