Glisson, William Bradley
The Web Engineering Security (WES) methodology.
PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.
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The World Wide Web has had a significant impact on basic operational economical components in global information rich civilizations. This impact is forcing organizations to provide justification for security from a business case perspective and to focus on security from a web application development environment perspective. This increased focus on security was the basis of a business case discussion and led to the acquisition of empirical evidence gathered from a high level Web survey and more detailed industry surveys to analyse security in the Web application development environment. Along with this information, a collection of evidence from relevant literature was also gathered. Individual aspects of the data gathered in the previously mentioned activities contributed to the proposal of the Essential Elements (EE) and the Security Criteria for Web Application Development (SCWAD). The Essential Elements present the idea that there are essential, basic organizational elements that need to be identified, defined and addressed before examining security aspects of a Web Engineering Development process. The Security Criteria for Web Application Development identifies criteria that need to be addressed by a secure Web Engineering process. Both the EE and SCWAD are presented in detail along with relevant justification of these two elements to Web Engineering. SCWAD is utilized as a framework to evaluate the security of a representative selection of recognized software engineering processes used in Web Engineering application development. The software engineering processes appraised by SCWAD include: the Waterfall Model, the Unified Software Development Process (USD), Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM) and eXtreme Programming (XP). SCWAD is also used to assess existing security methodologies which are comprised of the Orion Strategy; Survivable / Viable IS approaches; Comprehensive Lightweight Application Security Process (CLASP) and Microsoft’s Trust Worthy Computing Security Development Lifecycle. The synthesis of information provided by both the EE and SCWAD were used to develop the Web Engineering Security (WES) methodology. WES is a proactive, flexible, process neutral security methodology with customizable components that is based on empirical evidence and used to explicitly integrate security throughout an organization’s chosen application development process. In order to evaluate the practical application of the EE, SCWAD and the WES methodology, two case studies were conducted during the course of this research. The first case study describes the application of both the EE and SCWAD to the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery’s Online Photo Library (HOPL) Internet application project. The second case study presents the commercial implementation of the WES methodology within a Global Fortune 500 financial service sector organization. The assessment of the WES methodology within the organization consisted of an initial survey establishing current security practices, a follow-up survey after changes were implemented and an overall analysis of the security conditions assigned to projects throughout the life of the case study.
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