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Declassification Policy Inference

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Security-type systems can provide strong information security guarantees but often require enormous programmer effort to be used in practice. In this talk, I will describe inference of fine-grained, human-readable declassification policies as a step towards providing security guarantees that are proportional to a programmer’s effort: the programmer should receive weak (but sound) security guarantees for little effort, and stronger guarantees for more effort.

I will present an information-flow type system with where policies may be inferred from existing program structure. The inference algorithm can find precise and intuitive descriptions of potentially dangerous information flows in a program, and policies specify what information is released under what conditions. A semantic security condition specifies what it means for a program to satisfy a policy.

Our work demonstrates the soundness of an analysis for programs in a simple imperative language with exceptions. Furthermore, we have extended the analysis to an object-sensitive interprocedural analysis for single-threaded Java 1.4 programs and developed a prototype implementation.

This talk is part of the Logic and Semantics Seminar (Computer Laboratory) series.

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