Re: [secdir] secdir review of draft-ietf-netconf-monitoring

Juergen Schoenwaelder <j.schoenwaelder@jacobs-university.de> Thu, 17 June 2010 07:23 UTC

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Date: Thu, 17 Jun 2010 09:23:50 +0200
From: Juergen Schoenwaelder <j.schoenwaelder@jacobs-university.de>
To: Sam Hartman <hartmans-ietf@mit.edu>
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Subject: Re: [secdir] secdir review of draft-ietf-netconf-monitoring
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On Thu, Jun 17, 2010 at 02:26:33AM +0200, Sam Hartman wrote:
> >>>>> "Juergen" == Juergen Schoenwaelder <j.schoenwaelder@jacobs-university.de> writes:
> 
>     >> The document defines a data model for netconf monitoring.  The
>     >> security considerations section says in part:
>     >> 
>     >> Some of the readable data nodes in this YANG module may be
>     >> considered sensitive or vulnerable in some network environments.
>     >> It is thus important to control read access (e.g. via get,
>     >> get-config or notification) to these data nodes.
>     >> 
>     >> What is unclear from the document is whether or not the data is
>     >> secure *after* access is gained.  i.e. is there a secure
>     >> transport layer?  Should one be used?  If not, why?
> 
>     Juergen> NETCONF runs over SSH or TLS or TLS/BEEP or SOAP/HTTPS. In
>     Juergen> other words, all existing NETCONF transports are
>     Juergen> "secure". The revision of the NETCONF specification being
>     Juergen> worked on is going to make this hopefully clearer by
>     Juergen> calling the transport layer "secure transports".
> 
> I'll admit that if I read the netconf document and it described
> something as "secure transport," it would raise a concern in my mind.
> "secure" as an adjective is generally meaningless.  Typically it's
> applied to make people feel that security objectives are met without
> actually stating those objectives.
> 
> Presumably by secure, you mean something like:
> 
> * Transport authenticates identity of server to client and client to
>   server
> * Transport provides integrity protection and confidentiality for data
>   transported
> * Transport provides replay protection on a per-session level as well as
>   within a session
> 
> I'd be far more interested in the core document making these security
> services explicit than in having it replace all instances of transport
> with "secure transport."

Yes, I agree.

/js

-- 
Juergen Schoenwaelder           Jacobs University Bremen gGmbH
Phone: +49 421 200 3587         Campus Ring 1, 28759 Bremen, Germany
Fax:   +49 421 200 3103         <http://www.jacobs-university.de/>