[cabf_netsec] NetSec Subcommittee Meeting 29-Nov-2018

Ben Wilson ben.wilson at digicert.com
Sun Dec 2 13:12:24 MST 2018

Here are the draft minutes for your review.

29 November 2018

Present:  Ben Wilson, Dimitris Zacharopoulos, Corey Chapeski, Tim Crawford, Mark Ruchie, Fotis Loukos, Neil Dunbar, Thomas Connelly, Marcelo Silva, Trev Ponds, Stephen Hillier, Tim Hollebeek, Tobias Josefowitz, Pavan Chander, Ken Myers, Peter Miskovich, David Kluge

Ben noted that a Trello board had been created (https://trello.com/b/GPdBnML4/network-security-committee), and he reviewed the charter (https://cabforum.org/working-groups/scwg/network-security/), which says this about the Subcommittee's deliverables: "shall propose ballots to the SCWG to improve the minimal security standards within the mission defined above. This includes modifying the existing Network and Certificate System Security Requirements (NCSSR) or to create new requirements, guidelines, or best practices. Among other activities, the Network Security Subcommittee shall perform security analysis on typical CA Management Systems offering options to the Server Certificate Working Group for establishing minimal security standards. Risk analysis will also be used to provide a better understanding of threats and vulnerabilities in Certificate Management Systems. This process can be used to provide better reasoning and justification of existing or future security guidelines"

Dimitris suggested that the "shalls" would be the "minimal security standards" above and mandatory, whereas the "shoulds" would be "best practices". We would start with the basics and then build from there.

Fotis asked whether we would try to get to business that the previous working group was unable to complete.  It was agreed that we would review the previous work on the threat model for CAs and the identification and mitigation of threats, and build upon that work.

Neil noted that we focused on the Root CA system, and that the online CA system has high vulnerabilities. Ben asked about attacks targeting issuance systems. Dimitris noted that he would like to create a new guideline for root CA management systems that addresses the risks but uses a model that is easier to understand.

Fotis asked whether we would be looking at supply-chain threats or similar, like connection of USB sticks.

Trev suggested that we identify all of the threats and then rank them.

Dimitris asked how the ranking would work, based on likelihood, harm, etc.?

Trev agreed that it would be based on factors like recoverability, likelihood and impact. She asked to review the previous work on risk identification, and Neil re-circulated the link to the Google Doc - https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/16kRPobK31Qb7L4ooq4SJE6K6OmfPOizdtV9M-m475WU

Dimitris explained the reason for wanting to re-write requirements for Root CA Systems-the current NCSSRs aren't clear on how they apply to Root CA systems, whereas they are more geared toward online systems.

Tim Crawford expressed concern that different controls for different layers of CA systems would create confusion.

Ben said we might be able to work through that with the way we structure the documents.

David asked why create a separate document.

Dimitris responded that the current NCSSRs were a response to the Diginotar incident and had weird structuring-the idea is to start fresh with a better structure.

Trev asked whether it would be better to work on content first, and then structure.

Neil noted that the work product of this committee would go before the Server Certificate WG as a ballot.

Fotis noted that we could use Mozilla's Sea Sponge to work on the threat model. It was agreed that we should take a look at it, and Neil said he would play with it to see more about its capabilities. Fotis had additional notes that he would send to Neil.

Dimitris responded to Trev that he was going to try and follow RFC 3647 for the structural outline.

Fotis asked if we would have sub-sub-committees, and Neil suggested that we only do that when we have a ballot to work on. Dimitris clarified that no one is prohibited from informally grouping up to work on items within the scope or charter of this subcommittee.

Thomas noted that the last time we worked on this we  didn't focus as much on the offline root. We should identify the controls and see if they are still valid and still work.

Dimitris said we would try to address and accommodate a variety of deployment models, and mainly the most common ones. He also said we cannot be over-prescriptive.

Neil noted that in the end, we need to have auditable criteria, and everyone agreed that it was good thing to have auditors participating in the group.

Next meeting is December 13, 2018, meanwhile we'll continue to conduct our work on the mailing list.

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