How to Maintain Service Oriented Architecture Security

14.08.2020 Read
How to Maintain Service Oriented Architecture Security

Service Oriented Architecture has been one of the buzzwords in the cyber security community for a while. In this article, we will discuss what it is and how you can implement SOA security.

What is Service Oriented Architecture Security?

Service Oriented Architecture (also known as SOA) refers to a unique style of software design. In Service Oriented Architecture, the services are provided by application components using a communication protocol over the network. In addition, the Service Oriented Architecture is considered as a discrete unit which allows remote access and is independently updated. That is why Service Oriented Architecture is, as its name suggests, independent of the technologies, vendours and products.

Due to its versatile nature and widespread use, Service Oriented Architecture has many definitions. According to these definitions, a service has four main properties that can be found below.

  1. The service is able to logically represent a busines activity that has a specified outcome.
  2. The service can include various other services.
  3. The service needs to be self-contained.
  4. The service must be a black box for its customers for the sake of security. The customer should not be able to notice how the service works.

Similar to the modular programming, a Service Oriented Architecture can involve the use of different services in conjunction. That way, even a large software application can be made more functional.

What are the Benefits of the Service Oriented Architecture?

First and foremost, Service Oriented Architecture offers loose coupling between services. In other words, Service Oriented Architecture is able to divide and separate functions into unique services or units; as a result the developers can make these units accessible over the network. This way, the units can be combined and reused during the production of applications. Moreover, the units exchange data in very well defined, common format to ensure successful communication and seamless function.

In addition, Service Oriented Architecture offers six core values that serve as essential benefits:

  1. Flexibility: Service Oriented Architecture emphasizes flexibility over optimization.
  2. Intrinsic inoperability: Service Oriented Architecture emphasizes intrinsic inoperability over custom integration.
  3. Business value: Service Oriented Architecture emphasizes business value over technical strategy.
  4. Evolutionary refinement: Service Oriented Architecture emphasizes evolutionary refinement over initial perfection.
  5. Shared services: Service Oriented Architecture emphasizes shared services over purpose-specific implementations.
  6. Strategic goals: Service Oriented Architecture emphasizes strategic goals over project benefits.

What is Service Oriented Architecture Security?

As its name suggests, Service Oriented Architecture Security aims to ensure the security and sustainability of the SOA. Since Service Oriented Architecture pursues the goal of eliminating the application boundaries and differences between various technologies, several vulnerabilities arise.

WS Security, WS Trust, SAML, WS SecureConversation and WS SecurityPolicy are some of the most prominent solutions for Service Oriented Architecture Security. You can implement them in order to ensure that both your organization and customers are secure. In addition to employing the related technology, you also need to keep an eye on three most common problems of Service Oriented Architecture:

  • The inability to swiftly come up with composite applications whose parts are borrowed from various enterprise applications.
  • The issues regarding the ability to define services clearly through using encapsulating myriad diverse APIs as a base.
  • The problems regarding the management and containment of the services from one centre.
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