Reference from ESORICS proceedings

Third European Symposium on Research in Computer Security (ESORICS 94)

On the Expressive Power of the Unary Transformation Model

Ravi S. Sandhu, Srinivas Ganta

Keywords : Access control, Access rights, Authorization, Client-Server Architecture, Expressive Power

Abstract : The Transformation Model (TRM) was recently introduced in the literature by Sandhu and Ganta. TRM is based on the concept of transformation of rights. The propagation of access rights in TRM is authorized entirely by existing rights for the object in question. It has been demonstrated in the earlier work that TRM is useful for expressing various kinds of consistency, confidentiality, and integrity controls. In our previous work, a special case of TRM named Binary Transformation Model (BTRM) was defined. We proved that BTRM is equivalent in expressive power to TRM. This result indicates that it suffices to allow testing for only two cells in the matrix. In this paper we study the relation ship between TRM and the Unary Transformation Model (UTRM). In the UTRM, individual commands are restricted to testing for only one cell of the matrix (whereas individual TRM commands can test for multiple cells of the matrix). Contrary to our initial conjecture, we found that TRM and UTRM are formally equivalent in terms of expressive power. The implications of this result on safety analysis is also discussed in this paper.

(Pages 301-318)

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