Series: CISSP Study Sheet
Entry: Security Architecture and Design

The CISSP Study Sheet Series identifies the most important details regarding each individual domain within the Common Body of Knowledge. You will want to expand your preparation beyond these study sheets, such as my top 3 favorite CISSP study resources. The intent of this study sheet is to act as a last minute cram of the most significant principles, theories, formulas, and terms for each domain. I recommend reading the CISSP Study Sheets just before the test, and then doing a “brain dump” of notes for the first 15 minutes onto the paper issued with the CISSP exam. Hopefully, you will have remembered enough to have created an authorized cheat sheet. The third study sheet will focus on the Security Architecture and Design domain.

Security Architecture and Design Study Sheet

Information Security Management System (ISMS) – planning, creation, and maintenance of data and the processing of such information.
Information Security Architecture (ISA) – high level structuring of the business’s security requirements.

Trusted Computing Base – hardware, software, and firmware components of a network or system that addresses the aspects of security.
Reference Monitor – a theoretical machine that mediates subject’s access to objects.
Security Kernel – tamper proof mechanism that controls access to system resources by enforcing the rules of the reference monitor.
Security Perimeter – the imaginary boundary separating the components of the Trusted Computer Base and those elements outside it.

Common Architecture Language – addresses and ensures the communication and motivation of stakeholders.
Architecture Model – the beginning template in order to formulate an individual plan.
IT Infrastructure Library (ITIL) – aids the implementation of a framework through documents pertaining to service support, service delivery, security and application management, ICT infrastructure management, planning to implement service management and the business perspective.
Zachman Framework – deals with many components on a two dimensional level and gives a holistic view of the organizational architecture.
Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT) – an IT governance framework, functioning at an operational level, which manages the collaboration of control requirements, business risk, and technical issues.
Committee Of Sponsoring Organizations (COSO) – a corporate governance framework, functioning at the strategic level, to provide reasonable assurance of achieving the organization’s mission and evaluating the internal control systems.
The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF) – modeled for businesses, applications, data, and technology to provide a wide ranging approach to the design, planning, implementation, and governance of enterprise architecture.
Department of Defense Architecture Framework (DoDAF) – consists of operational, technical, and overarching views for government architectures.

Centralized Architecture – a mainframe based environment with central control of security measures.
Distributed Architecture – modern client server based environment needing standardized interfaces and protocols.
Thin Client Architecture – limiting of functions on a workstation to a more hybrid distributed and centralized approach.

CPU – performs mathematical and logical functions, and controls the timing of executions.
Secondary Storage – consists of non-volatile media, such as a hard drive, backup tape, floppy, or CD-ROM.
Virtual Storage – paging and swapping operations of secondary storage needed to enlarge a bank of memory.
Deadlock – occurs when multiple processes attempt to access the same resource simultaneously.

Process Isolation – preserving the integrity of an object, preventing object interaction, and creating independent object states using such tactics as segmented memory addressing, time multiplexing of shared resources, naming distinctions, encapsulation of objects, and virtual mapping.
Layering – Adds modularity to the system by separating processes and allowing layer communication only through defined interfaces.
Ring Protection – controlling access through numbered ring segments for the OS Kernel, Input / Output, utilities, and user applications. Privileged processes running in a low numbered inner ring whilst the higher numbered rings have access to less system resources.

Dedicated Security Mode – only processes one level of information classification and is restricted to just the user(s) with the appropriate security clearance.
Closed System – proprietary to a vendor.

TOC/TOU – Time of check / Time of use asynchronous attack takes advantage of timing event dependencies.
Covert Channel – unintentional timing and storage avenues that transmit data in violation of the security policy.
Covert Timing – the modulating use of system resources to enable process to process communications.
Covert Storage – permits processes to write to storage and allows other processes to read it.
Maintenance Hook – a programmer’s backdoor into an application for maintenance purposes. Remove before production.

Trust – all the security mechanisms are functioning correctly to protect sensitive information.
Assurance – the level of confidence that the security implementations will provide adequately protections during foreseeable circumstances.

Security Model – used during the development of security policies, system engineering, and software implementation.
Information Flow Security Model – tracks data to indentify if sensitive information is being transmitted to unprotected areas. This addresses Covert Channels.
State Machine Model – an abstract math model where state variables represent the system state. For example, if a system starts in a secure state, it needs to fail securely also.
Lattice Model – a mathematically descriptive model that provides upper and lower bounds of authorized access.
Non-Interference Model – preventative controls that limit subjects from violating security policy and affecting each other when operating in different domains.
Bell-LaPadula – a confidentiality model that disallows reading up and writing down.
Biba – an integrity model that prevents unauthorized users from making modifications and disallows reading down and writing up.
Clark-Wilson – an integrity model that uses access triple and limits rights to objects via applications.

Orange Book (TCSEC) – the Trusted Computer System Evaluation Criteria was maintained by the U.S. Department of Defense and is an older means to evaluate the security functions supporting confidentiality.
ITSEC – the Information Technology Security Evaluation Criteria is an international evaluation tool that separates assurance and functionality ratings (EF).
Common Criteria – Created from the fundamentals of TCSEC and ITSEC, the Common Criteria is an international standard, or ISO 15408, and is the latest means of evaluating system security.
Evaluation Assurance Level (EAL) – a measurement of 1-7 identifying and verifying the security functions that address confidentiality, integrity, and availability.

Certification – validation that the technical and non technical controls on a system are suitable for the operational environment.
Accreditation – management’s formal acceptance of the certification and approval of the system to operate in a specific environment.

More CISSP Study Sheets and other CISSP resources.