In recent times, most enterprise and organizations use the internet based security systems with user information such as username and password as the login details, for security and access authentication purposes in file sharing and distribution. However, this information can often be easily captured by hackers and unauthorized users who may edit, modify, delete or otherwise corrupt the file leading to loss in confidentiality, integrity and availability. The observed shortfall led to this research; to develop a file sharing platform that is not just reliable in terms of security but is very easy to use and economical. A carefully designed software-based platform that enables file sharing as large as 2gigs between users in an intranet networked environment using the Wifi-Hotspot technology. The platform was realized using a combination of the PHP, Java script, HTML in creating the different modules of the platform and the multi security layers while the Xampp provided the design database and local host. In achieving this, organizations were understudied to ascertain the root of information insecurity through the use of questionnaire and direct oral interviews. Data collected from the interview was used as a basis for the development of the platform. The obtained responses from the questionnaire were analyzed using the statistical standard deviation relation. The result obtained shows that there is a significant increase in file security as the number of security layers increases. The understudied security parameters increased significantly (Data confidentiality 48-87%, Data availability 40-92% and Data integrity 50-84%). Hence the need for the development of the system cannot be overemphasized.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title Page i
Table of Contents vi
List of Tables ix
List of Figures x
CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background of Study 1
1.2 Statement of Problem 3
1.3 Aim and Objectives of Study 5
1.4 Scope of the Project 5
1.5 Justification of the Study 6
CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1 Conceptual Framework 7
2.2 Security Overview 7
2.2.1 Fundamentals of network security 10
2.2.2 Layered security systems 11
2.2.3 Single layer security system 16
2.2.4 Double layer security system 17
2.2.5 Multi layered security system 18
2.2.7 PHP (Hypertext Pre-processor 24
2.2.8 XAMPP 27
2.2.9 File transfer and sharing 28
2.3 Theoretical Framework 31
2.3.1 File transfer via system resource sharing 32
2.4 Empirical Framework 33
2.4.1 Dropbox 35
2.4.2 Google drive 39
2.4.3 Wi-Fi as hotspots 43
2.5 Review of Related works 44
2.6 Summary of the Review 57
2.7 Literature Gap 57
CHAPTER 3: MATERIALS AND METHODS
3.1 Materials 59
3.1.1 Xampp 59
3.1.2 Aptana studio 60
3.1.3 Bootstrap 3 60
3.1.4 JQuery 60
3.2 Research Methodology 60
3.2.1 Choice of method 60
3.3 Data Collection 61
3.3.1 Mean values of the security parameters in a single layer security system. 62
3.3.2 Mean values of the data security parameters in a double layer security system 66
3.3.3 Mean values of the data security parameters in a multi-layer security system 70
3.4 System Design 73
3.4.1 Design model 73
3.4.2 The system design algorithm 73
3.4.3 The system flowchart 75
3.4.6 Block diagram’s component 78
CHAPTER 4: RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
4.1 Comparison of the Security Parameters on the Different number of Security Layers 80
4.2. Discussion 82
4. 2.1 Analysis of the charts 82
4.3 Design view of the system 83
CHAPTER 5: CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
5.1 Conclusion 93
5.1.1 Contribution to knowledge 94
5.2 Recommendation 95
LIST OF TABLES
3.1 Value of the average rate in % of core principles of data communication in single layer security system 64
3.2 Value of the average rate in % of core principles of data communication in double layer security system 68
4.1 Value of the average rate in % of core principles of data communication in multi-layer security system. 78
4.2 Value of the average rate in % of core principles of data communication in single, double and multi-layer security system 79
LIST OF FIGURES
2.1 Five layered approach to security 13
2.2 Block diagram of a multi layered security system 21
2.3 The flow chart of a three layer security system 22
2.4 Getting started with XAMP 28
2.5 Active FTP 29
2.6 Dropbox application 36
2.7 Google drive 42
3.1 Xampp control panel 59
3.2 Graphical representation of the average rate of principle
of data communication in percent in a single layer security system 65
3.3 Graphical representation of the average rate of principle of data communication in percent in a Double layer security system 68
3.6 Design flowchart of the system 71
3.5 The System block diagram 73
4.1 Graphical representation of the average rate of parameters of data security in percentage (%) in a multi-layer security system. 79
4.2 Graphical representation of the average rate of principle
of data communication in percent in single, double and the multi-layer security systems using Line graph 80
4.1 Graphical representation of the average rate of principle of data communication in percent in single, double and the multi-layer security systems using histogram 81
4.4 The first welcome page for the application 83
4.5 The sign up page of the design 84
4.6 The diagram of the sign in/login page 85
4.7 The diagram of the Captcha page 86
4.8 Diagram of the platforms dashboard 87
4.9 Diagram of the platform’s dashboard 88
4.10 Diagram showing the forbidden/ warning page 89
4.11 Diagram showing the different file types on the dashboard 90
4.12 Diagram showing the different action options on the download module
4.13 Diagram of the role control module (Create admin) 91
4.14 Diagram of the Xampp start up (the remote server application) 92
4.15 Diagram of the phpmyadmin of the server 93
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Since the inception of information and data security, organisations have deployed several strategies and layer(s) of security in order to checkmate illegal access to data and secure data from the hands of intruders, hackers and other unauthorised users. New vulnerabilities are emerging as computers become more common as components of medical and transportation and other aspects of life especially as a component of domestic and international financial systems. Many disasters may result from intentional attacks on systems, which can be prevented, detected, or recovered from through better security. The nation needs computer technology that supports substantially increased safety, reliability, and, in particular, security. Security refers to protection against unwanted disclosure, modification, or destruction of data in a system and to the safeguarding of systems themselves. Security, safety, and reliability together are elements of system trustworthiness which inspires the confidence that a system will do what it is expected to do (The National Academies of Science Engineering and Medicine, 1991).
There have existed different layers of security before now, it started with the single layer security system of authentication, where a user is verified just by a single security factor, example, using the username and password for authentication. As time progressed, it was observed that these credentials (username and password) could easily be hacked by an intruder thereby compromising the integrity, authenticity and confidentiality of the data so easily; hence, it was not seen as an optimum security system. Due to the observed lapses in the single layer security system, the double layer security layer was built. This system requires that a user successfully passes two layers of security, the first being the username and password while the second layer might involve the use of biometrics. This system proved to be better than the single layer security system but still had some loop holes.
The inefficiency of these systems gave rise to the need to have a multi layered security system which will give a better secured information/data transfer system by making the system very hard and difficult for a hacker to penetrate.
Corporate intranet users need to develop systems to share information in virtual space through the Intranet without risking the security confidentiality and integrity of their data. Many enterprises share and reuse information through the intranet (Kang, 1996., Kang et al., 2003., Park et al., 1997). However, the intranet systems, which provide these many types of services, need to incorporate better solutions for security and access control of the different users using it (Lee et al., 2011). For instance, an organizational file transfer and distribution processes among the different staff categories. In order to provide this type of corporate services, a remote server-based system is developed (a remote server being that it is locally hosted and typically intranet based). This will allow users create their accounts with their credentials, such as the usernames-passwords, bio-data and official information such as; staff current level, staff number etc. This will enable the staff obtain his appropriate access permission right on the server. Staff will also be required to successfully supply additional authentication data using the RSA (Rivest-Shamir AdLeman) token and the QR (Quick Response) Codes).
More so, with the current hick in data subscription, organisations need ways and mediums to share files between its staff without having to go through the internet mediums which will require data subscription. A platform that will work in an intranet network using the WiFi hotspot connectivity. Now, depending on the number of users that are expected to connect to the network, the wireless routers and switches can be deployed in creating networks for the users.
Wireless networking technologies such as Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) allows computers and other devices to communicate over a wireless signal (Irfan, 2012). Convenient mechanism of proving authenticity over the public link is the use of Passwords. Public networks are quite vulnerable and unsecure in practical use (University of Miam, 2008).
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
File security has been of great importance in the entire face of internet and intranet especially for file on transit (shared from one user to another). The use of proper and high secured authentication system in preventing unauthorized users from having access to files has been a great issue within organization. Using an ordinary string security such as username and passwords can be easily hacked by hackers and intruders. Conventional systems have several major shortcomings when used to carry out information sharing tasks. Traditional user authentication implies that the user is known to the system before file requests can be processed. However, the commonly used information access model on the web is that browsers can download pages from web servers without prior registration (i.e., anonymously).
Again, file and directory permissions are inherited from multi-user computer operating systems. Sharing is achieved by either account sharing (which is extremely ill-advised, as it defeats accountability) or through the use of group access permissions on files and directories. However, group permissions assume the intervention of the system administrator for creating the user accounts, and adding the appropriate users to the correct groups. Such permissions lack flexibility and granularity, and perhaps most importantly, extensibility: there is no way of adding new permissions if the existing ones prove inadequate. These out listed shortfalls in the area of group access permission as found in conventional systems prompted the development of this system which is capable of transferring file of up to 2GB between users in an intranet environment and a more secured platform with multi-layer security. With the proposed system, users will have to sign up with the platform hence having their individual accounts, with this the problem of account sharing is solved. Secondly, file security is tightened in this system being that multi-layer authentication is required before a successful file exchange can take place.
1.3 AIM AND OBJECTIVES OF STUDY
The aim of this research is to design and implement an intranet file exchange and distribution with multi-layer security system. In achieving the goal of this research, the following research objectives are to be realised.
i. To investigate an organisational file sharing and management system in other to identify the loopholes responsible for the observed loss of integrity and authentication in file sharing and distribution.
ii. To develop an algorithm necessary for the designs of the ten modules that made up the system.
iii. To use the algorithm developed in objective 2 to develop a web based platform with its modules such as, Login module, user’s registration module, upload and download module and a Captcha generating module using PHP programming language.
iv. To develop the different security layers and incorporate it with the web based platform in iii above.
v. To validate the developed system using the data obtained from data collection process and response from the single/double layer systems, to ensure improvement in the security of file in transit.
1.4 SCOPE OF STUDY
This study focuses on the development of an intranet file exchange and distribution system using a locally hosted machine. It uses the Wi-Fi-Hotspot technology in creating a connection between devices that are sharing files within organization. It is a purely software-based project designed using PHP (Hypertext Pre-processor). Unlike the internet based system, this system uses a local server hence file sharing and distribution is only within the locally networked computer. File sharing is only allowed for authorized users with a valid login credential and have successfully inputted the generated Captcha Code authentication and answered correctly the Security question as was answered as at the time of registration. This serves as additional security layers after inputting a valid login detail. Files cannot be accessed from computers without local connection to the server, since it is a locally hosted platform.
1.5 JUSTIFICATION OF THE STUDY
The importance of information sharing and distribution in an organisation cannot be over emphasized, but the security of information on transit is very necessary in order to ensure that the principles and properties of data communication are maintained. These principles which include confidentiality, integrity and availability amongst others as earlier mentioned can easily be compromised by the conventional single and double layer security system; hence there is a need to develop a more secured security system that will have multi-layer authentication. The platform provides a remote (locally hosted server) and cost effective method of sharing and distributing files securely in a networked system of personal computers and other related gadgets. It is cost effective because there is no need for internet in the distribution of these files.
The wireless fidelity and hotspot technology create the needed network and enable the uploading and downloading of files between users on personal computers, mobile device etc.
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