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A Comparative Study of Fine Grained Security Techniques Based on Data Accessibility and Inference

Authors: Azhar Rauf, Sareer Badshah, Shah Khusro


This paper analyzes different techniques of the fine grained security of relational databases for the two variables-data accessibility and inference. Data accessibility measures the amount of data available to the users after applying a security technique on a table. Inference is the proportion of information leakage after suppressing a cell containing secret data. A row containing a secret cell which is suppressed can become a security threat if an intruder generates useful information from the related visible information of the same row. This paper measures data accessibility and inference associated with row, cell, and column level security techniques. Cell level security offers greatest data accessibility as it suppresses secret data only. But on the other hand, there is a high probability of inference in cell level security. Row and column level security techniques have least data accessibility and inference. This paper introduces cell plus innocent security technique that utilizes the cell level security method but suppresses some innocent data to dodge an intruder that a suppressed cell may not necessarily contain secret data. Four variations of the technique namely cell plus innocent 1/4, cell plus innocent 2/4, cell plus innocent 3/4, and cell plus innocent 4/4 respectively have been introduced to suppress innocent data equal to 1/4, 2/4, 3/4, and 4/4 percent of the true secret data inside the database. Results show that the new technique offers better control over data accessibility and inference as compared to the state-of-theart security techniques. This paper further discusses the combination of techniques together to be used. The paper shows that cell plus innocent 1/4, 2/4, and 3/4 techniques can be used as a replacement for the cell level security.

Keywords: Cell, Inference, row, Fine Grained Security, Data Accessibility, Column Level Security

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