Title: Modelling Information Assets for Security Risk Assessment in Industrial Settings
Citation: The 15th EICAR Annual Conference Proceeding p. 137-149
Publisher: Ecole Superieure et d'Application des Transmissions
Publication Year: 2006
JRC N°: JRC32767
URI: http://publications.jrc.ec.europa.eu/repository/handle/JRC32767
Type: Articles in periodicals and books
Abstract: Industry has begun in the last years to take into consideration the use of Public Information Infrastructures (including the Internet) for remotely monitoring, managing and maintaining their technical systems. Concurrently, technical and business information systems are getting interconnected both through private and public networks. As a result, industry is exposed to internal and external cyber-threats, and the security assessment of the ICT infrastructures assumes a predominant relevance. However, underlying every useful security methodology there is a system description which decomposes the system in term of services, component, relationships and assets. In this paper, we focus our attention on a particular type of system asset to which, to our knowledge, the usual security assessment methodologies do not pay sufficient attention, the information asset. Such an asset, in fact, represents the core of every ICT infrastructure (commands sent to components are information assets, data stored into databases are information assets, data flowing through the network are information assets); therefore we believe that its proper description and analysis is key for assuring reliable results for security assessments. Starting from some classical definitions of information and knowledge, we examine this type of asset aiming at identifying the more suitable representation with respect to its security attributes. In more detail, we identify as interesting properties the interdependence between information assets, their life cycles, their dynamics (i.e. the flows of the information assets within the system), their topological location (in term of subsystems that hosts the information assets) and the correlation between the information assets and the vulnerabilities affecting the components of the system. We provide then a formal modelling framework for describing the characteristics of the information assets under a security assessment perspective.
JRC Directorate:Space, Security and Migration

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