<< Valtech Blog is live | Home | Use of best of breed open source >>

Security compliance without empirical evidence

As the project nears the final delivery I am having to complete a statement of compliance for group security (did you feel a shiver as you read that, it was justified). One of the values I have tried to instil is that we don't do any documentation or formal design with no clearly defined audience. When we do identify a subject that does need to be formally recorded I am keen that it is done well. The interactions between components OAUTH  is one of those few key areas.

The OAUTH sequence diagram was correctly checked into the UML repository and was pretty good. Looking at it I was suddenly struck but a deep sense of unease. How was I supposed to know whether the implementation sitting on our servers bears any relation to the work of art being displayed on my screen? What value is my statement without real knowledge that we are secure? I know this is is something I have known for years and bang on about to anybody who will listen but it was a startling moment to be sitting there looking at the design and being asked to make a formal statement about its realisation without empirical evidence. I already knew from an audit of the acceptance test suite (end to end, automated, in-container tests) that one of the omissions was anything that exercised OAUTH. I decided that one of my priorities for tomorrow will be the completion of that test and that I wont be making a statement of compliance without it.



Add a comment Send a TrackBack