Security issues, tooling, innovations and education within OpenStack are the responsibility of the Security SIG. The Security SIG is a horizontal effort within OpenStack that is comprised of what was previously referred to as the OpenStack Security Project. The Security SIG undertakes both technical and governance activities within OpenStack, aiming to provide guidance, information and code that enhances the overall security of the OpenStack ecosystem.
Organization and Contribution
The Security SIG is built up primarily of two groups of people; those who write OpenStack code and those who try to secure OpenStack clouds! We have contributors from over 30 different companies involved in OpenStack. If you're interested in helping to make OpenStack more secure, either through writing better code, cross project collaboration, writing documentation or inventing cool new features and tooling - we want to hear from you!
The security SIG has no formal leadership, instead it has chairs who arrange meetings and organise votes. The current chair is Gage Hugo (AT&T).
The security SIG has an IRC room (#openstack-security) on irc.freenode.net that's used for general communications, chat and the occasional user query. The security SIG meets monthly to discuss current security activities and progress on security happenings within OpenStack. We encourage new contributors to say hello during our meetings.
- Weekly meeting IRC information
- Weekly meeting logs
- Logs from the #openstack-security room
- IRC WebChat Client
The process of becoming a member of the group is described on the OSSG Launchpad page. At the moment of writing, there is no defined "procedure" to get involved into the OSSG and a suggested set of steps follows. Each described steps might or not be relevant depending on the individual member's background and familiarity with the OpenStack project.
Some steps to get started are:
- Read the OpenStack documentation and understand the most common deployment scenarios.
- Go through the OpenStack installation guide and create a deployment (either a native one or in a virtualized environment), in order to get a basic understanding of the interaction of the different OpenStack services. Some installation scripts such as Devstack and Packstack are readily available. However, you should not underestimate the educational benefits of spending some quality time to install OpenStack manually.
- Read the newly released OpenStack security guide in order to dive into the security aspects of setting up and running an OpenStack deployment.
- Getting acquainted to some degree with the rest of the OpenStack manuals is highly encouraged.
- The next step is to choose one of the OpenStack components in order to become closely familiarized with it and eventually be able to use the combined expertise of the OSSG in order to make thoughtful contributions to the component (code reviews, direct code contribution, architectural aspects) and improve its security. It is of course important to chose a component that would closely match your interests; given the size of OpenStack, becoming closely familiar with the chosen component's code base, deployment and administration practices might require significant time investments. Once you have chosen a component, send an email on the OSSG email list to let others know about your intentions.
See https://wiki.openstack.org/wiki/Security/How_To_Contribute for more details on how you can improve OpenStack security.
The Security SIG issues Security Notes targeted at OpenStack Users and Vendors who either run or package OpenStack for use by downstream consumers.
Security Advisories - OSSA
The VMT is a small group of experienced developers who receive, triage and release fixes for vulnerabilities in OpenStack. The final stage of fixing a vulnerability is to release a Security Advisory for the community. The OSSA details the nature of the vulnerability and any workaround or patches required to mitigate it. The Security SIG works closely with the VMT assisting with feedback on various issues.
Security Notes - OSSN
Security Notes are designed to complement the Security Advisories issued by the Vulnerability Management Team. Security notes can be issued for almost anything affecting the security of potential OpenStack deployments. In many cases a vulnerability may be reported that cannot be fixed immediately because the fix might break the API or otherwise cause service-breaking issues for downstream consumers. Often the Security SIG write notes that will guide deployers in how to best mitigate the issues when an OSSA cannot be provided. OSSNs are also issued for significant vulnerabilities in third party applications that would affect OpenStack deployments.
Most of the documentation we produce, be it the security guide or security advisories are focussed on downstream consumers of OpenStack technology. We are also actively working on guidance and tooling for *developers* in the hope that we can help stop vulnerabilities making it into code in the first place.
This book was written by a close community of security experts from the OpenStack Security SIG in a short, intense week-long effort at an undisclosed location. One of the goals for this book is to bring together interested members to capture their collective knowledge and give it back to the OpenStack community.
We now have a blog, take a look to see the latest of what has been happening in the OpenStack Security world: https://openstack-security.github.io/
Vulnerability Management Team
The OpenStack Vulnerability Management team is the first point of contact for OpenStack security issues. They are responsible for the vulnerability handling and disclosure process.