Security Policy Management in Distributed Systems

M. Hitchens, V. Varadharajan, and G. Saunders (Australia)


Access Control, Policy Management, Policy Hierarchy, Domains


We present a model for policy management structures. The model captures the relationship between policies and objects and the entities that manage policies for those objects. In the model a system is viewed as consisting of a number of policy management domains. The domains are arranged in a hierarchy, representing descending levels of authority. A number of important issues for policy management are identified and addressed within the model. These include meta-policy questions such as who has control over the placement of an object in a policy management domain and where it can be moved within the hierarchy. A number of possible approaches to each of these questions are discussed.

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