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I basically have this homework question that needs me to support the below statement. Any suggestions on how i could go around proving it ?

the Exact Question was :

"The KISS principle is frequently applied in the implementation of security."

I was thinking on the line of KISS being applied on Android Pattern lock-screen as a form of security. would this be a good start ? or am i in the totally wrong path.

edit: i have changed the topic, im am studying in a computer science subject, if i am in the wrong place, could you let me know which place i should be at ? thanks in advance

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closed as off-topic by FrankW, Luke Mathieson, Wandering Logic, Juho, Shaull May 8 '14 at 13:18

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "This question does not appear to be about computer science, within the scope defined in the help center." – FrankW, Luke Mathieson, Shaull
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    $\begingroup$ What exactly is the homework question, and what is its context (what did you learn in the course)? $\endgroup$ – Gilles May 8 '14 at 6:37
  • $\begingroup$ This question actually seems like a reasonable topic. $\endgroup$ – Louis May 8 '14 at 8:18
  • $\begingroup$ That is a statement, not a question. $\endgroup$ – Joe May 8 '14 at 20:56
  • $\begingroup$ how should i rephrase the question so that it might fit in the topic? or is there any other place where i should place this question instead ? $\endgroup$ – user129522 May 9 '14 at 4:11
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As stated, to prove that the KISS principle is frequently applied, you would need to make a study of design documents of a large number of security-related projects, and measure how often rationales mention KISS as a choice of strategy.

I suspect that this isn't what you're being asked, though — but rather, to look for evidence that KISS is a good idea for security. This would be fishing for the notion of attack surface: simpler systems have fewer opportunities for an attacker to find a flaw.

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It would be easier to demonstrate the opposite by reference to http://www.cert.org/ -- there should be plenty of materials to show that people screw up security all the time. KISS is about keeping things tractable by scrupulously avoiding complexity. But we attempt secure systems on complex platforms like Windows or Unix, which is quite at odds with the KISS principle.

A "simple" implementation of security demands a simply-understood threat model, a simply-understood platform, a simply-understood development, manufacturing, and chain-of-custody model, and so forth. In the real world, these are hard problems. Practical systems need to come to grips with that and often the compromises yield vulnerabilities.

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You might want to look at the recent spate of problems with SSL, across a number of implementations:

and try to figure out if the complexity of X509 and SSL played any role.

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