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Protecting Databases from Schema Disclosure - A CRUD-based Protection Model

Pereira, O. ; Regateiro, DDR ; Aguiar, R.

Protecting Databases from Schema Disclosure - A CRUD-based Protection Model, Proc International Conf. on Security and Cryptography - SECRYPT, Lisbon, Portugal, Vol. I, pp. 292 - 301, July, 2016.

Digital Object Identifier: 10.5220/0005967402920301

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Database schemas, in many organizations, are considered one of the critical assets to be protected. From database schemas, it is not only possible to infer the information being collected but also the way organizations manage their businesses and/or activities. One of the ways to disclose database schemas is through the Create, Read, Update and Delete (CRUD) expressions. In fact, their use can follow strict security rules or be unregulated by malicious users. In the first case, users are required to master database schemas. This can be critical when applications that access the database directly, which we call database interface applications (DIA), are developed by third party organizations via outsourcing. In the second case, users can disclose partially or totally database schemas following malicious algorithms based on CRUD expressions. To overcome this vulnerability, we propose a new technique where CRUD expressions cannot be directly manipulated by DIAs any more. Whenever a DIA starts-up, the associated database server generates a random codified token for each CRUD expression and sends it to the DIA that the database servers can use to execute the correspondent CRUD expression. In order to validate our proposal, we present a conceptual architectural model and a proof of concept.