Autonomic Trust Agent (ATA) For SOA Interoperability

Overview

Currently, exchanging data between different systems running on different SOA platforms in a secure fashion is a critical issue in most of the applications. The project that we are undertaking is aimed at solving this problem of data communication among different systems and establishing interoperability

While setting up the communication between different agents, a lot of challenges have been faced.The vendor specific implementations of web services makes it hard to set up the interactions between these web services based on different vendor platforms. A simple example will be the inability of web services implemented in .NET to communicate with web services implemented in Java. Thus the data exchange between these systems via web services become near impossible. Also, hardly any work has been undertaken till now in making different ESBs a part of common network and establishing interaction between them. A lot has been talked about the agents in the grid network but nothing substantial has been put forward in terms of SOA implementations. Moreover, the handling of semantic differences between systems and web services has been a long standing issue. The simple example can be thought of in the e-commerce application. While one system may refer to the object being sold as "Instrument", the other system may refer to the same object as "Equipment". Also, there may be difference in data types in different systems referring to similar entities. Furthermore, the trustworthiness of ESB in the network is another big issue that needs to be taken care of while establishing interaction. A lot of work has been done in the recent past in calculating the trust value of different entities in the grid to maintain trustworthy and secure interaction. Our work capitalizes on the past work to give a new integrated approach to establish trust based secure interactions.

The main goal of our project is to use autonomic approach and tackle the challenges that we have just discussed. The architecture that we have come up with involves creation of special agent software called Autonomic Trust Agent (ATA). Every ESB in the network will have the ATA agent attached to it. The ESB and ATA agent together will form the communication agent in the network. While interacting with each other, the ESB will communicate via this ATA agent to ensure trust based interaction. Each ATA agent will be driven by policies or rules that will dictate the interactions between different agents. Also, each ATA agent will be responsible for identifying the criticality of interaction, establishing trust, setting up secure channel between each other and exchanging data, and monitoring the interactions and system based on the trustworthiness of the agents/systems with whom it is interacting.




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People


Ankit Shanker
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Research Areas and Interests: Distributed Computing, Grid Computing, Service oriented Architecture, Business Intelligence & Corporate Performance Measurement, Software Design and Enterprise Systems.


Don P. Cox
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Research Areas and Interests:Autonomic Computing, Autonomic Network Security, Autonomic Management, Biomedical Modeling & Simulation, and Space Systems Autonomic Command & Control.

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