• Database Forensics in the Service of Information Accountability

      Snodgrass, Richard; Pavlou, Kyriacos; Department of Computer Science (2011-11-04)
      Regulations and societal expectations have recently expressed the need to mediate access to valuable databases, even by insiders. At one end of the spectrum is the approach of restricting access to information and on the other that of information accountability. The focus of the proposed work is effecting information accountability of data stored in databases. One way to ensure appropriate use and thus end-to-end accountability of such information is tamper detection in databases via a continuous assurance technology based on cryptographic hashing. In our current research we are working to show how to develop the necessary approaches and ideas to support accountability in high performance databases. This will include the design of a reference architecture for information accountability and several of its variants, the development of forensic analysis algorithms and their cost model, and a systematic formulation of forensic analysis for determining when the tampering occurred and what data were tampered with. Finally, for privacy, we would like to create mechanisms for allowing as well as (temporarily) preventing the physical deletion of records in a monitored database. In order to evaluate our ideas we will design and implement an integrated tamper detection and forensic analysis system. This work will show that information accountability is a viable alternative to information restriction for ensuring the correct storage, use, and maintenance of databases.