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OASIS Announcement of WSS QoP Discussion List

Date:      Fri, 13 Sep 2002 14:30:23 -0400
From:      Karl F. Best <>
Subject:   OASIS announcement of WSS QoP discussion list

Upon the request of eligible participants I have created an OASIS Discussion List whose purpose is to discuss the creation of an OASIS Technical Committee. Discussion on the list will begin in seven days to give all interested people a chance to subscribe, and the list and its archive will be deleted after 90 days. The list is:

The proposal for the formation of the list is below.

In order to participate in the discussions on these topics you should subscribe to the discussion list using the subscription form at or by sending a message to:

with the word "subscribe" as the body of the message. OASIS membership is not required in order to subscribe to this list. If you do not wish to subscribe but wish to view the discussion you may view the list archives at

Karl F. Best
OASIS - Director, Technical Operations
+1 978.667.5115 x206

WSS QoP - Web Services Security Quality of Protection

List name


[i.e.] WSS QoP - Web Services Security Quality of Protection

Scope and purpose of the TC under discussion

To identify candidate solutions for communicating the required security tokens and quality of protection for a Web service, taking advantage of the common service definition tools, such as WSDL.

The solutions are intended to allow a service consumer to determine:

  1. how to produce a SOAP message including security tokens and protection mechanisms, in accordance with WSS, that is acceptable to both the provider and consumer

  2. whether the consumer is capable of performing the required security processing on the response from a Web service.

Components of security policy include at least:

  1. the set of acceptable types of security token
  2. the set of acceptable cryptographic algorithms
  3. (optionally) what key to use for encryption
  4. the payload nodes to be protected.

The topic is potentially open-ended, leading to solutions for trust policy, authorization policy, personal privacy policy, etc. While recognizing this, it is the intention to limit the identified solutions to those that address the QoP of the initial mechanisms of WSS. This is analogous to the "cipher suites" and "supported algorithms" mechanisms of TLS and S/MIME, respectively.

In addition, the group will identify candidate process models for:

  1. producing a WSDL instance from a security policy definition, and
  2. producing a language-specific API from a WSDL instance.

In which security policies may be applied at:

  1. design time (port type, binding),
  2. deployment time (port, service) and
  3. run time (dynamic).

Proposed activities of the TC under discussion

  • Prepare a full list of the components of a Web-Service security policy
  • Identify the subset of policy components required to support the initial mechanisms of WSS
  • Receive briefings on related activities (e.g. WSDL, UDDI, ebXML, WSS)
  • Propose and evaluate publication models
  • Propose and evaluate process models
  • Agree the next step
  • Publish a summary report

Deliverables of the Discussion List

A decision whether to form an OASIS TC, and if yes a proposal to do so

Sponsors of this proposal

Zahid Ahmed, CommerceOne,
Martijn de Boer, SAP,
Yassir Elley, Sun,
Phillip Hallam-Baker, VeriSign,
Ron Monzillo, Sun,
Tim Moses, Entrust,
Tony Nadalin, IBM Nadalin
Robert Philpott, RSA Security,
Krishna Sankar, Cisco,

Discussion leader

Tim Moses, Entrust,


Prepared by Robin Cover for The XML Cover Pages archive. See (1) "Web Services Security Specification (WS-Security)"; (2) other references in the news item of 2002-09-21: "Discussion Forum for Web Services Security Quality of Protection."

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