The system, called "Protection Poker," was developed by computer security experts at North Carolina State University and is already being used in a pilot project to identify security problems.
In Protection Poker, lead researcher Dr. Laurie Williams explains, software development managers are asked to present ideas for new software features or applications to their team of programmers. Members of the software development team are then asked to vote on two questions: how valuable is the data that the new feature will be using? And how easy will it be to attack the new feature?
The development team members use a special deck of cards to vote that allows them to rank the value and ease of attacking the new feature on a scale of 1 to 100. Everyone on the team flips over his or her cards simultaneously. Members who voted with the highest and lowest cards are asked to explain their votes. If one member of the team has ranked the vulnerability as a 40, while the rest of the team ranked it as a three, that member may know something the others don't, Williams says. This process takes advantage of the diversity of knowledge and perspective within the development team.
This process, while simple and inexpensive, is effective – particularly if it takes place during the planning stage, so that potential problems can be addressed before any coding has taken place. For example, Williams and her research team launched a Protection Poker pilot project with Red Hat IT in October 2008 – and have already identified vulnerabilities and prevented them from being included in software projects at that company.
Williams is currently in discussions with other private companies and government agencies about the possibility of launching additional pilot projects to test the Protection Poker system. Williams is an associate professor of computer science at NC State. The Protection Poker research team includes two NC State doctoral candidates in computer science: Michael Gegick and Andrew Meneely.
In addition to identifying security flaws, Protection Poker is also a valuable training tool. Having an individual explain his or her vote results in that person's security knowledge being shared with the entire software development team, Williams explains.
The Protection Poker research, "Protection Poker: Structuring Software Security Risk Assessment and Knowledge Transfer," was presented at the first-ever Engineering Secure Software and Systems (ESSoS) Conference in Leuven, Belgium, earlier this month.
Gegick and Williams have also co-authored research, with Pete Rotella of Cisco Systems, that effectively allows software developers to identify the elements of their software that are most likely to have security vulnerabilities. While the program does not identify the vulnerabilities, it does evaluate reports of non-security problems with a program (or "bugs") to determine which elements of the program should be prioritized as possibly having security flaws. This research, "Toward Non-security Failures as a Predictor of Security Faults and Failures," was also presented at the ESSoS conference.
Matt Shipman | EurekAlert!
New software speeds origami structure designs
12.10.2017 | Georgia Institute of Technology
Seeing the next dimension of computer chips
11.10.2017 | Osaka University
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
19.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
19.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
19.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy