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Subject: [ebxml-jc] ebXML security "architecture"

[draft of information on security in ebXML]

The ebXML architecture document, http://www.collaborativedomain.com/standards/documents/eBTWG_Architecture_v0.50.pdf, does not itself have a security section, and refers to security details as part of the technical details configured within the ebXML CPA, which itself can provide configuration information for the ebXML Messaging layer.

The UN/CEFACT Modeling Methodology (UMM) [defined in the N090R10 specification, http://www.gefeg.com/tmwg/n090r10.htm
] which is also architecturaldefines some security attributes that can be specified for business collaborations.These trickle down eventually into the BPSS [http://www.ebxml.org/specs/ebBPSS.pdf ]as attributes of BusinessActions (the RequestingBusinessActivity and RespondingBusinessActivity), and the CPPA specifies how these security attributes are more concretely implemented.

ebXML 1.0 did issue a Security Risk Assessment document, http://www.ebxml.org/specs/secRISK.pdf,
as part of the Technical Architecture. Sections 14 and  15 on future requirements listed areas where ebXML
specifcations might be improved. CPPA has followed several of these suggestions in producing version 2.0 of its
specification, now under review at OASIS. For example, additions now allow agreement on PKI matters such as trust
anchors; this permits each side to know the other can validate the certificates (even when self-signed)
that are used in the various cryptographic operations over the message.

ebXML itself is more a consumer of security specifications rather than an originator. Because security agreements can be variously implemented, a start at representing security capabilities that can be used in implementing secure collaborations has been made in the CPPA work, and in the ongoing Negotiation protocol work in that area. At present, the security details that can be represented pertain to functional areas such as digital enveloping, digital signatures for use in non repudiation of origin or receipt, transient confidentiality and authentication as found in SSL 3.0 or TLS 1.0, and authentication credentials (mainly basic or digest modes for HTTP). The Oasis ebXML Messaging specification has an appendix outlining various security profiles for use within ebXML that involve combinations of the preceding functions along with some others. The Messaging specification also details a way to sign SOAP with attachments using XMLDsig for the signature technology that has been tested for interoperability.

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