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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2014, Article ID 232708, 13 pages
Research Article

An Action-Based Fine-Grained Access Control Mechanism for Structured Documents and Its Application

1State Key Laboratory of Integrated Services Network, Xidian University, Xi’an 710071, China
2State Key Laboratory of Information Security, Institute of Information Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100093, China
3Institute of Computer Science & Technology, Peking University, Beijing 100080, China
4Liverpool John Moores University, Liverpool L3 3AF, UK

Received 8 March 2014; Revised 10 June 2014; Accepted 11 June 2014; Published 17 July 2014

Academic Editor: Fei Yu

Copyright © 2014 Mang Su et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper presents an action-based fine-grained access control mechanism for structured documents. Firstly, we define a describing model for structured documents and analyze the application scenarios. The describing model could support the permission management on chapters, pages, sections, words, and pictures of structured documents. Secondly, based on the action-based access control (ABAC) model, we propose a fine-grained control protocol for structured documents by introducing temporal state and environmental state. The protocol covering different stages from document creation, to permission specification and usage control are given by using the Z-notation. Finally, we give the implementation of our mechanism and make the comparisons between the existing methods and our mechanism. The result shows that our mechanism could provide the better solution of fine-grained access control for structured documents in complicated networks. Moreover, it is more flexible and practical.