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From "Tomi N/A" <hef...@gmail.com>
Subject rich client db security in an untrusted environment
Date Fri, 25 Apr 2008 12:29:08 GMT
Hi everyone,

I am working on the architecture of a future system and am stuck at security.
The stack is GNU/linux, postgresql, cayenne and tomcat.
Alongside the web application, I will have a WebStart-capable swing
client which accesses the (remote) database.
I don't want the db username or password  ever to be known outside of
the database server.
The only solution I came up with is using ROP (don't know if any of
it's limitations are going to hurt): the user enters his/her
_application_ credentials which are sent to tomcat, tomcat verifies
the credentials using JDBCRealm (reading from the application
database) and allows the client to use the cayenne web service.
Theoretically, a malicious user might write his own swing app and log
in using a valid username/password combination to do whatever he likes
in the database (having the complete db mapping at his disposal). This
worries me, but it might be good enough for now (as the attacker
wouldn't be able to compromise the database without valid
credentials).
In this case I have complete autonomy deciding how we're going to
build the application, but what would I do if I couldn't use ROP (say,
no servlet container available)? Other possibilities?

I very much welcome opinions and comments.
Regards,
Tomislav

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