On 06/13/2017 09:28 AM, Robert Haas wrote:
> On Tue, Jun 13, 2017 at 12:23 PM, Stephen Frost <sfr...@snowman.net> wrote:
>> Key management is an entirely independent discussion from this and the
>> proposal from Ants, as I understand it, is that the key would *not* be
>> in the database but could be anywhere that a shell command could get it
>> from, including possibly a HSM (hardware device).
> Yes.  I think the right way to implement this is something like:
> 1. Have a GUC that runs a shell command to get the key.
> 2. If the command successfully gets the key, it prints it to stdout
> and returns 0.
> 3. If it doesn't get successfully get the key, it returns 1.  The
> database can retry or give up, whatever we decide to do.
> That way, if the user wants to store the key in an unencrypted text
> file, they can set the encryption_key_command = 'cat /not/very/secure'
> and call it a day.  If they want to prompt the user on the console or
> request the key from an HSM or get it in any other way, they just have
> to write the appropriate shell script.  We just provide mechanism, not
> policy, and the user can adopt any policy they like, from an extremely
> insecure policy to one suitable for Fort Knox.

Agreed, but as Bruce alluded to, we want this to be a master key, which
is in turn used to encrypt the actual key, or keys, that are used to
encrypt the data. The actual data encryption keys could be very long
randomly generated binary, and there could be more than one of them
(e.g. one per tablespace) in a file which is encrypted with the master
key. This is more secure and allows, for example the master key to be
changed without having to decrypt/re-encrypt the entire database.


Crunchy Data - http://crunchydata.com
PostgreSQL Support for Secure Enterprises
Consulting, Training, & Open Source Development

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: OpenPGP digital signature

Reply via email to