EGI Core activities:2015-bidding Security coordination and tools

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  • Service name: Security coordination and security tools


Introduction

Security is recognised as an important aspect of e-Infrastructures and requires coordination between the EGI participants at various levels, in particular for the prevention and handling of incidents.

To keep a distributed infrastructure secure there is need for a coordination activity of the security effort at NGI and resource center level, and for tools that automatically test the EGI sites for vulnerabilities.

Technical description

The security coordination activities must liaise with the resource providers (~40 among NGIs and EIROS) the resource centres (~350) and oversee the technologies used in the production infrastructure, for example: O.S. Platforms, HTC, Cloud, Storage, AAI capabilities.

The service includes the following components.

Coordination

  • Security Operations Coordination - Central coordination of the security activities ensures that policies, operational security, and maintenance are compatible amongst all partners, improving availability and lowering access barriers for use of the infrastructure. This coordination ensures that incidents are promptly and efficiently handled, that common policies are followed by providing services such as security monitoring, and by training and dissemination with the goal of improving the response to incidents. This includes liaison with external security organisations, coordination security training, of security service challenges and of security threat risk assessment.
  • Security Policy Coordination - Security policy development covers diverse aspects, including operational policies (agreements on vulnerability management, intrusion detection and prevention, regulation of access, and enforcement), incident response policies (governing the exchange of information and expected actions), participant responsibilities (including acceptable use policies, identifying users and managing user communities), traceability, legal aspects, and the protection of personal data. Since research is global, such policies must be coordinated with peer infrastructures in Europe and elsewhere, such as PRACE, Open Science Grid, XSEDE, and like efforts in the Asia Pacific. Coordination mechanisms such as the FIM4R group, TERENA REFEDS, SCI, Open Grid Forum and the IGTF will need to be employed.
  • Security Incident Response Coordination - Coordination of incident response activities in collaboration with the Incident Response Task Force. The primary responsibility for basic incident response and forensics still lies with each NGI, while the EGI Global IRTF will coordinate incident response and information exchange. For complex multi-site incidents and in cases where advanced forensics is needed, the EGI Global IRTF will step in and take an active part, to protect the continued integrity of the EGI infrastructure as a whole. Validation of EGI Global incident response capability is done by coordinating security service challenges that both assess readiness of infrastructure operations and verify adequate traceability features in the software used. This task will also liaise with other CSIRTs via for example TF-CSIRTS and FIRST.
  • Software Vulnerability Group Coordination - The Software Vulnerability Group aims to eliminate existing software vulnerabilities from the deployed infrastructure and prevent the introduction of new ones, and runs a process for handling software vulnerabilities reported. This depends on investigation and risk assessment by a collaborative team drawn from technology providers and other security groups, known as the Risk Assessment Team (RAT).
  • International Grid Trust Federation (IGTF) and EUGridPMA - A common authentication trust domain is required to persistently identify all EGI participants. This task is about the representation of EGI in IGTF and EUGridPMA. This representation will bring operational and policy needs of EGI to the attention of the PMA, bring issues raised by the PMA to the attention of the appropriate groups within EGI, and keep the EGI Council informed of progress and policies of the EUGridPMA. This task is also responsible for the coordination of the provision of EGI versions of the IGTF Certification Authority distributions as required by the EGI Council.

Operations

The provisioning of this activity includes the operations and maintenance of the operational tools that support security, namely:

  • Security Nagios - A Security Nagios service is provided to monitor a range security relevant assets like CRLs, file system permissions, vulnerable file permissions etc. Ad-hoc probes need to be deployed to support incident management, to assess the vulnerability of the infrastructure with regard to specific security issues and for proactive security management. The results produced are available to the EGI Security dashboard for visualization.
  • Pakiti - Pakiti is monitoring and notification service which is responsible for checking the patching status of systems. The results produced are available to the EGI Security dashboard for visualization.
  • Incident Reporting Tool - RTIR for tracking of incident reporting activities.
  • Tools for Security Service Challenge support - Security challenges are a mechanism to check the compliance of sites/NGIs/EGI with security requirements. Runs of Security Service Challenges need a set of tools that are used during various stages of the runs. The tools include a web portal used by the SSC operators to control the run, an extension of RTIR for evaluations of sites, and customized Pakiti used in SSC preparation phases.

Support

Support through the EGI helpdesk to users and service providers. Support through abuse@egi.eu for the incident handling.

Support hours: eight hours a day , Monday to Friday – excluding public holidays of the hosting organization.

Service level targets

Effort

Bids planning a total effort between 20 and 24 Person Months/year would allow these services and activities to be addressed appropriately.