Istituto di Informatica e Telematica     
Martinelli F., Matteucci I. Action Refinement for Security Properties Enforcement. Technical report, 2010.
In this paper we propose an application of the action refinement theory for enforcing security policies at different levels of abstraction by using process algebra controller operators. Let us consider a system that cooperates with a possible untrusted component managed by a programmable controller operator in such a way that the considered composed system is secure, i.e., the composed system works as expected. Firstly, the considered system is specified at a high level of abstraction. Successively, we refine it by applying a refinement function in such a way that we pass through different abstraction levels. Here we investigate on the set of features a refinement function needs to have for guaranteeing that a considered system, which is secure at high level, once refined is still secure regardless the behaviour of the implementation of the untrusted component. Indeed, by applying an action refinement function, it is possible to refine the system, the controller program and the possible untrusted component as if they were three independent entities, in such a way that their implementation does not depend on each other. Hence the capability of the controller operator to make the system secure regardless the behaviour of the untrusted component at high level, is also preserved at a lower level.
Subject Action refinement function
controller operator
security property

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