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Integrated Security Model for SNMP

Document Charter Integrated Security Model for SNMP WG (isms)
Title Integrated Security Model for SNMP
Last updated 2011-08-12
State Approved
WG State Concluded
IESG Responsible AD Sean Turner
Charter edit AD (None)
Send notices to (None)

The Simple Network Management Protocol version 3 (SNMPv3) provides
  message security services through the security subsystem. Previously
  the ISMS Working Group defined a Transport Subsystem definition, a new
  Transport Security Model, and a Secure Shell Transport Model and a
  method for authenticating SNMPv3 users via the Remote Authentication
  Dial-In User Service (RADIUS). The initial body of work to be tackled
  by the working group involved only these pieces. Additional work on
  other transport models and other security extensions were to wait
  until the initial transport architecture and defining documents were
  It is now possible to authenticate SNMPv3 messages via a RADIUS when
  those messages are sent over the newly defined SSH transport.
  However, it still remains impossible to centrally authorize a given
  SNMP transaction as on-device pre-existing authorization configuration
  is still required. In order to leverage a centralized RADIUS service
  to its full extent, the access control decision in the Access Control
  Subsystem needs to be based on authorization information received from
  RADIUS as well. The result will be an extension to obtain
  authorization information for an authenticated principal from RADIUS.
  The authorization information will be limited to mapping the
  authenticated principal to existing named access control policies,
  defining session timeouts, and similar session parameters. This
  mechanism will not provision the detailed access control rules.
  Additionally, new work will be undertaken to define TLS and DTLS-based
  transports that can offer support for environments that prefer
  certificate authentication. Certificate based authentication is
  desirable for many environments with a centralized authentication
  service. DTLS also provides datagram-based transmissions which may be
  desired for environments where TCP performance suffers because of
  network anomalies (e.g. high packet loss rates). A combination of TLS
  and DTLS-based transports offers solutions that addresses both the
  need for certificate-based authentication and for datagram-based
  delivery. Operators will be able to chose the transport solution that
  best meets their needs.
  The current goal of the ISMS working group is two-fold: to develop a
  method for allowing for access control decisions to be based on
  information provide by an AAA provisioning service and to develop
  TLS-based and DTLS-based Transport Models.
  The new work must not modify any other aspects of SNMPv3 protocol as
  defined in STD 62 (e.g., it must not create new PDU types).
  The working group will cover the following work items:
  - Specify a mechanism to support centralization of SNMPv3 Access
  Control decisions by means of a RADIUS-provisioned policy name
  bound to a username, which the VACM extension will use to
  dynamically populate the securityToGroupname table. Additionally,
  specify a time limit for access decisions, and such a time limit
  should be used to garbage collect expired dynamic securityToGroup
  - Specify TLS and DTLS transport models for SNMP.