Dr. Christian Wimmer

Decentralized Information Flow Control on a Bare-Metal JVM

Karthikeyan Manivannan, Christian Wimmer, Michael Franz: Decentralized Information Flow Control on a Bare-Metal JVM. In Proceedings of the Workshop on Cyber Security and Information Intelligence Research, article 64. ACM Press, 2010. doi:10.1145/1852666.1852738

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A large array of privacy sensitive applications like banking servers, medical records processors, and legal software are Java applications. Preserving user privacy is a necessary feature in such applications. For example, in a medical records system, only the authorized doctors and medical staff should be allowed access to patient information. Decentralized Information Flow Control (DIFC) provides an effective means for preserving user privacy. In a traditional setup where the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) runs on top of an Operating System (OS), sensitive information flows both through the JVM and the OS, and effective enforcement of information flow policies requires tracking data across both these entities. Implementing information flow control in such systems requires modification, and subsequent auditing, of both the JVM and OS source code.