Fighting Spyware with Mandatory Access Control in Windows Vista

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Dokumentart: Bachelor Thesis
Institut: Department Informatik
Sprache: Deutsch
Erstellungsjahr: 2008
Publikationsdatum:
SWD-Schlagwörter: Spyware , Zugriffskontrolle
Freie Schlagwörter (Deutsch): Bell-LaPadula-Model
DDC-Sachgruppe: Informatik

Kurzfassung auf Englisch:

Inside this report, existing Mandatory Access Control (MAC) implementations are analyzed, with a strong focus on Microsoft Corporation’s Mandatory Integrity Control (MIC) MAC implementation in the Windows Vista operating system (OS), and the development of an important security concept for efficiently fighting spyware in Windows Vista using the MAC access control security mechanism is described. The reasons behind the development of this important security concept are three-way: (i) the increased and growing seriousness of the threat posed by spyware today to computer user’s privacy, (ii) the elevated and wide-spread usage of the Microsoft Windows OS, and (iii) the inefficiency and flawed nature of today’s tools and techniques designed to fight ever-evolving spyware allied to the efficient and powerful possibilities provided by MAC in that regard. The problem addressed is spyware, namely (sensitive) information disclosure. It is addressed by tweaking MIC and taking advantage of it, more precisely by running Web browsers and e-mail clients with low rights, making sure that objects created by these applications have equally-low rights, and enabling a security policy in sensitive files that restricts read access to low-rights subjects, and then using MIC as the enforcement mechanism. The result is an important security concept, and it is concluded that, even though application compatibility and user experience is affected, it should be possible to use MAC to efficiently fight spyware in Windows Vista because spyware depends on the ability to read in order to collect (sensitive) data, and because the architecture that enables this (MIC) is already implemented in the OS (Windows Vista). One significant implication of the developed concept is the ability that it provides to actively, efficiently, and transparently (to the user) fight the serious and growing threat of spyware in the most used OS platform in the world.

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