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AWS Information System

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Project Document
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COIT2054 Information Systems Project Draft
Improving Data security for Software as a Service (SaaS): Case of Amazon AWS
Project Document
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Executive Summary
Providing security to the SaaS model of Amazon AWS is the goal of this project. Amazon AWS
security by design is the main concept considered for this project, where the proposed model of
security is modeled from the design of the web services level itself. Security by Design (SbD) is
explored and the required level of security modeling and recommendations are done in this
project. This approach will consider the AWS SaaS accounts and implements the security model
in terms of the automatic security controls and auditing requirements. Required security controls
will be built within the AWS IT management process, where this will be done using the security
standards and compliances required to protect the SaaS delivery model of cloud computing.
Security issues in cloud computing like Authentication and Authorization, availability, virtual
machine security, data confidentiality, information security and network security will be
considered for this proposed Security by Design approach.
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Table of Contents
Executive Summary ...................................................................................................................................... 2
Introduction ................................................................................................................................................... 4
Project Management Overview..................................................................................................................... 4
Statement of Work .................................................................................................................................... 4
Objectives ................................................................................................................................................. 5
Constraints ................................................................................................................................................ 6
Team Members and Responsibilities ........................................................................................................ 6
Project schedule ........................................................................................................................................ 8
Strategic Alignment Plan ............................................................................................................................ 12
Description of current system ..................................................................................................................... 13
Issues ....................................................................................................................................................... 13
Problems ................................................................................................................................................. 14
Constraints .............................................................................................................................................. 14
Stakeholder Analysis and Management Plan .............................................................................................. 15
Requirements Elicitation Methodology ...................................................................................................... 17
Proposed Requirements Statement.............................................................................................................. 20
UML diagram.......................................................................................................................................... 24
Risk Analysis and Risk Management Strategies......................................................................................... 26
Mitigation steps....................................................................................................................................... 27
Conclusion and Recommendations ............................................................................................................. 27
References ................................................................................................................................................... 28
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Introduction
As mentioned, providing security to the Cloud SaaS delivery model is the goal of this project and
for this instance case of Amazon AWS SaaS is considered. Infrastructure of AWS is composed
of high available resources, where top propriety is given to the privacy and security of the
customer information. The AWS infrastructure has been designed to provide the highest
availability of the deployed systems and resources via the AWS cloud and it manages the basic
roles and responsibilities of the infrastructure access. Four important main goals of Amazon
AWS are Customer Demand, Operational Efficiency, and increased agility and expand their
market and global reach. So in this context, AWS security should be implemented at two
important aspects as listed

Security for the AWS environment

Security for the hosts and applications ("Security by Design - Amazon Web Services
(AWS)", 2018)
Project Management Overview
Statement of Work
Security for the AWS environment provides protection and security to the AWS accounts, where
the features and configuration used to build this are considered here. Encryption functions,
logging functions and identifies and rules used to build the AWS environment are considered to
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manage the security for AWS. Security for the hosts and applications include the databases on
the disks, operating systems and the applications as accessed by the customers ("Cloud Security
– Amazon Web Services (AWS)", 2018)
Tools and techniques are customized as per the customer application and process needs. From
these two aspects, proposed Security by Design approach is modeled and implemented to the
AWS environment level security requirements. End to end security for all the functions, services,
applications and data in AWS are considered for this project, where the required level of security
is provided to the operational accessibility and visibility.
Objectives

To understand the AWS environment level security requirements which includes the
security controls, policies, functions and services

Draft the AWS functions and services based on the secure environment requirements and
this includes the design of configurations, encryptions, resource permissions, logging
requirements, authorizations and environment security controls

Design the service catalog with the standard templates and thus enforce the AWS service
design to use the secure environment controls.

Create user groups and roles for access management

Network segmentation to the entire AWS environment by creating different subnets for
different user groups or roles like development, production, and configurations using the
ACLs (Access Control Lists)
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Constraints

Gathering the auditing requirements

Understanding the cloud aware functions and services required for AWS environment
level security

Resources required to evaluate the AWS customer functions and services in modeling the
Security by Design solution
Team Members and Responsibilities
Student name
Role
Responsibilities
(Student name)
Project Manager
Responsible to gather the
current security issues and
challenges of the Amazon
AWS SaaS
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Student name
Role
Responsibilities
(Student name)
AWS reviewer
Responsible to review the
cloud SaaS of AWS in
terms of the challenges
like data, information and
network security
(Student name)
Policy writer
Responsible to draft the
security policies and
standards based on the
current limitations
identified with the
Amazon AWS SaaS
(Student name)
Security Designer
Responsible to model a
secured design model and
environment with the
functions with high
secured environment and
access controls
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Student name
Role
Responsibilities
(Student name)
Testing
Responsible to test the
security by design
approach in terms of the
outcomes like access
management, network
segmentation, resource
control and monitoring
and data encryption
(Student name)
Responsible to develop
Content writer
the security by design
templates and perform
validation activities
Project schedule
Task Name
Duration
Start
Finish
50 days
Mon 12-03-18 Fri 18-05-18
Amazon AWS Security by
Design Model
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1.Analysis of Cloud
Deployment and Delivery 13 days
Mon 12-03-18 Wed 28-03-18
models
1.1 Analysis of Cloud
2 days
Mon 12-03-18 Tue 13-03-18
4 days
Wed 14-03-18 Mon 19-03-18
4 days
Tue 20-03-18
3 days
Mon 26-03-18 Wed 28-03-18
12 days
Mon 26-03-18 Tue 10-04-18
4 days
Mon 26-03-18 Thu 29-03-18
3 days
Fri 30-03-18
SaaS Requirements
1.2 Review of Security
challenges of SaaS
1.3 Identification of
major security challenges
Fri 23-03-18
and threats
1.4 Categorizing the
security challenges of SaaS
2. Review of Amazon
AWS SaaS
2.2 Documenting the
Amazon AWS Architecture
2.3 Evaluating the
Security architecture of
Amazon AWS SaaS
Tue 03-04-18
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2.4 Limitations of
Security architecture of
2 days
Wed 04-04-18 Thu 05-04-18
5 days
Wed 04-04-18 Tue 10-04-18
Controls implementation 8 days
Wed 11-04-18 Fri 20-04-18
Amazon AWS
2.5 Documenting the
challenges and issues of
Amazon AWS Security
architecture
3. Development of
matrix
3.1 Drafting the controls
3 days
Wed 11-04-18 Fri 13-04-18
1 day
Mon 16-04-18 Mon 16-04-18
2 days
Tue 17-04-18
Wed 18-04-18
2 days
Thu 19-04-18
Fri 20-04-18
9 days
Mon 23-04-18 Thu 03-05-18
and security policies
3.2 Review of the
standards and controls
3.3 Drafting the control
requirements
3.4 Drafting the
implementation guidelines
4. Modeling the Secure
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by Design approach
4.1 Access management
2 days
Mon 23-04-18 Tue 24-04-18
3 days
Wed 25-04-18 Fri 27-04-18
4 days
Mon 30-04-18 Thu 03-05-18
4 days
Fri 04-05-18
Wed 09-05-18
2 days
Fri 04-05-18
Mon 07-05-18
2 days
Tue 08-05-18
Wed 09-05-18
7 days
Thu 10-05-18
Fri 18-05-18
accepted audits and quality 3 days
Thu 10-05-18
Mon 14-05-18
Tue 15-05-18
Fri 18-05-18
design model
4.2 Network
segmentation modeling
4.3 Data encryption
modeling
5. Preparing the
templates
5.1 Preparing the
service catalog
5.2 Drafting the
CloudFormation Templates
6. Final Validation
Activities
6.1 Test the general
controls
6.2 Enable AWS
4 days
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Configuration design
services
Strategic Alignment Plan
Strategic alignment plan for the proposed project is given below
Alignment perspective
Strategy execution
Description

Project manager will gather the current security issues and
challenges of the Amazon AWS SaaS

AWS reviewer will review the cloud SaaS of AWS in
terms of the challenges like data, information and network
security
Technological potential

Policy writer will draft the security policies and standards
based on the current limitations identified with the
Amazon AWS SaaS

Security designer will to model a secured design model
and environment with the functions with high secured
environment and access controls
Project Document
Competitiveness Potential
13

Project manager will identify the competitive SaaS
provides and evaluate the security models used by them

IT manager will implement the Security by Design
approach and market the solution to build the required
competitive potential
Service level

Testing team will test the security by design approach in
terms of the outcomes like access management, network
segmentation, resource control and monitoring and data
encryption

Policy writing team and content writing team will develop
the security by design templates and perform validation
activities
Description of current system
Issues
SaaS (Software as a Service) Security challenges are considered for this research and the current
solutions for the Amazon AWS services are reviewed. Research problem is to protect the
Amazon AWA Software as Service architecture. Currently Amazon AWS are secured with
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multiple third party authorized audit security system (ISO/IES-27002 control frame work). This
framework provides information security and there are some loopholes in terms of providing the
required data security due to large data synchronization services being done every day on the
Cloud servers (Moore, 2016)
Problems
Security for AWS is limited to the problems as listed below due to the third party service
providers

Biggest security risk with Amazon AWS is associated with the small business
organizations, as they do not understand, where and how the security responsibilities
being and end with the provider

AWS handles the security for its services and platforms and doesn’t concern about the
security needs of the customers or business units infrastructure

Security responsibilities defined by AWS are unclear to the organizations or customers as
they don’t have domain level knowledge of designing different AWS cloud solutions

Insufficient and infrequent system patches offered by AWS

Poor firewall and network security implementation (Poremba, 2017)
Constraints

Gathering the auditing requirements
Project Document

15
Understanding the cloud aware functions and services required for AWS environment
level security

Resources required to evaluate the AWS customer functions and services in modeling the
Security by Design solution
Stakeholder Analysis and Management Plan
Stakeholder analysis and management plan is given with the following stakeholders map
Stakeholder
Interest
Influence
Description
AWS Customer
High
High
AWS Customer
requirements in term
of the functions,
services and resources
are considered to
model the Security by
Design solution to
provide the security
for AWS
Web Service
providers
Low
High
AWS Service
providers has high
influence in modeling
the proposed solution
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i.e. Security by
Design. Functional
and service level
components used for
the design and
development of the
SaaS and Web service
components are
considered to provide
the security at the
environment and
design level
System developers
High
Low
AWS Security by
Design developers
will have high interest
in modeling the
proposed solution.
Required functions,
services, logging
activities,
infrastructure and
resource requirements
are considered to
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model the proposed
security model
Competitors
High
High
Competitors of the
security providers will
high interest and
influence in the
proposed Security by
Design model. As this
model uses the
functional and service
level design and
environment
constraints to protect
the SaaS of Amazon,
other security and
third party service
providers plays a
prominent role here.
Requirements Elicitation Methodology

Reviewed the Cloud computing delivery models i.e. SaaS, PaaS and IaaS
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
Drafted the security standards and policies to protect the SaaS

Reviewed the Amazon AWS SaaS and understood its current security architecture

Prepare the security standards and policies to protect the data security services of AWS

Modeled security for SaaS right from the service design level

Drafted the security by design templates for the customer’s security needs as provided by
Amazon AWS

These templates were prepared by considering the customer level usage factors like AWS
account design, automatic security control requirements and security auditing
requirements

Drafted the security by design principles and these include the following
o Design for failure of the services
o Plan for breach
o Design for cost
o Security for every layer of service or application

Data related to the security by design concept as proposed to the AWS customers is
collected from the Introduction to Security by Design Concepts, whitepaper published by
Amazon

Design by Security is the basic security related service provided by Amazon to secure
their code and design level interfaces and functions

To develop the proposed information system useful to the customer in understanding and
using the security by design controls and security audits of AWS, two levels of security
are considered and they include
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o Security of the AWS environment
o Security of hosts and applications

Security by design follows the basic concepts of Quality of Design proposed by Joseph
M. Juran

Security by design considers the following items while proposing the required level of
security to the AWS customers
o Infrastructure
o Operating system
o Applications running on AWS

Required security and compliances of the AWS are developed using the four phase
approach as given below

Understand the business or AWS customer needs and inherit the required AWS audits
and security controls

Build a secure environment as per the business needs of the customer using the
configurations that match with the default security configurations provided by AWS

AWS provides AWS CloudFormation templates and the users will be enforced to use the
same security templates within their organization to analyze their security needs

These templates contain the most required security controls, frameworks and leading best
practices
Project Document

20
Performing the validation activities is the final step of implementing the security by
design, where the customers can use the templates and configurations of AWS to control
their security configurations and audits
Proposed Requirements Statement

Required templates for the basic AWS security be design concepts are available from the
website https://aws.amazon.com/compliance/nist/

This template is downloaded and the data across the various worksheets of excel is
analyzed

Secure by design covers the four types of security controls and audits to protect the
customer services and they include
o Identification
o Protection
o Detection
o Response
o Recovery

Each of the worksheet as mentioned has different number of columns as listed
o Category, which contains the security scenarios, conditions and events as per the
AWS security controls and measures
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o Subcategory contains the detailed list of security items or threats under the
categories as mentioned
o Customer responsibility in handling the required security or audit requirements
are defined in another column
o AWS Implementation/Enablers/Processes
o AWS Services and Responsibility

Huge data is provided or maintained within this security by design template provided by
AWS

Scanning the required security situations or conditions and checking for the
recommendations proposed by AWS is one of the challenging task

End users with limited knowledge on the AWS roles, responsibilities, controls and audits
to be followed in case of any event or threat cant get their right action or responsibility to
implement

Also, changing the event or category or subcategory of the security control or audit will
automatically changes the respective AWS responsibilities or recommendations and
customer recommendations

Understanding and making decision on the right customer responsibility to protect their
infrastructure or network or application against the AWS recommendations is the major
challenge here
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
22
Thus the goal of this application is to enable the customer with a rich user interface
application that can handle huge of amount of data related to the AWS security by design
templates

All the data available with these templates will be stored a relational database
management system like MySQL

Business logic to access the security conditions or categories and displaying the exact
AWS recommendations and customer responsibilities will be modeled as the required
business logic in the proposed information system

JSP based user interface and Servlets based business and database connectivity will be
used for the Security by design application

This application will contain the user roles and responsibilities saved in the database as
per the information available or provided by AWS

Whenever the end user or the AWS customer selects the desired situation they encounter
in terms of security compliance or audit, the respective information and steps with the
details of AWS security measures, services, responsibilities and customer responsibilities
will be displayed
 With the proposed model, SaaS functions of AWS will designed with user level and
network level access restrictions
 Data categories from the security by design excel templates will be saved to MySQL
server database
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 Java application will enable the users to view, act and update on the required AWS
security controls and audits as per the predefined template definitions
 Display of the AWS recommendations, responsibilities and the customer responsibilities
is provided to the users via a rich user interface

Thus, selecting and implementing the required AWS security and control will be easy to
the users, when compared to using the unstructured templates provided by AWS
Templates as mentioned for implementing the proposed security by design are shown below
Project Document
UML diagram
24
Project Document
25
CV Analysis
Issue AWS
guidelines
«uses»
«uses»
Implement the AWS
security guidelines
«uses»
«uses»
Security by Design expert
«uses»
Categorize the user
level security
requirements
AWS
«uses»
«uses»
«uses»
«uses»
Define the user
roles
Define the
functional access
Prepare the Security
by design templates
Customer
«uses»
Develop JSP user interface
to select the desired
security issue
Display
appropriate template
Review and use the
templates
«uses»
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Risk Analysis and Risk Management Strategies
Few risks identified for model the secure by design approach to secure the Amazon AWS SaaS
are given below
Risk ID
Risk
Probability Consequences
Impact
Mitigation
R1
Configuration
High
High
Required
Risk
R2
Cloud
Low
Configuration
services those
security
should be
standards,
enabled after
control and
the design for
policies should
services might
be clearly draft
fail, with the
before the
standards are
Config files are
not followed
created
AWS Cloud
High
Characteristics
environment
environment
of the AWS
risk
might not
SaaS should be
respond while
analyzed
deploying the
upfront to avoid
secure by
this risk
design model
Project Document
27
Mitigation steps
Mitigation steps to evaluate the QoS of proposed secure by design approach is as discussed

Independent audits are prepared and reviewed as per the public and generally accepting
standards

Audit quality objectives will be tested as per the design used to model the services

Point-in-time architecture will be used to test the AWS Config process
Conclusion and Recommendations
Providing security to the Cloud SaaS is the main goal of this research. For this project, case of
Amazon AWS SaaS is considered and the current security challenges and the solutions used by
Amazon will be reviewed. Based on the security challenges and limitations with the AWS SaaS,
a design by model is proposed to improve the security for the Amazon Services. Design is done
by establishing a reliable control and standards policy. Templates are created using the technical
scripting standards and the service design is done using these templates and standards. Based on
the proposed approach security to the AWS customer environments are created and proposed
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References
Moore, L. (2016). The Top 7 AWS Security Issues: What You Need to Know – Threat
Stack. Threatstack.com. Retrieved 25 April 2018, from https://www.threatstack.com/blog/whatyou-need-to-know-about-the-top-7-aws-security-issues/
Poremba, S. (2017). Biggest AWS Security Risks and What You Can Do. Tom's IT Pro.
Retrieved 26 April 2018, from http://www.tomsitpro.com/articles/aws-security-risks,1-3580.html
Cloud Security – Amazon Web Services (AWS). (2018). Amazon Web Services, Inc..
Retrieved 26 April 2018, from https://aws.amazon.com/security/
Bennage, C. (2017). Azure and AWS services compared multicloud. Docs.microsoft.com. Retrieved 26 April 2018, from https://docs.microsoft.com/enus/azure/architecture/aws-professional/services
Security by Design - Amazon Web Services (AWS). (2018). Amazon Web Services, Inc..
Retrieved 26 April 2018, from https://aws.amazon.com/compliance/security-by-design
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