Enhancing information security

JISEC-Assurance Continuity

Last Updated:Jan 22, 2024

1 What is the Assurance Continuity?

  • The assurance continuity is the paradigm that defines the maintenance and the re-assessment and recognizes the previous evaluation in order to reuse the applicable previous evaluation results in the case a certified TOE or its environments are changed.

  • The maintenance is the approval of maintaining certification of an IT products, etc., including changes to the certified IT products, etc., or its development environment in the case that the changes have been confirmed to have only a small impact on security.

  • The re-assessment is to confirm that the certified TOE has not been changed, but the changes in the various attacks landscape need to be assessed to check if the TOE still reaches the same level of resistance as initially certified.

2 What is the Maintenance?

  • The maintenance is the mechanism that the certification can be maintained if it can be confirmed that the changes do not impact on the evaluated security functions though the certified product is upgraded by bug fixings, or manual amendments.

  • Maintenance recognizes that as changes are made to a certified TOE or its environment, evaluation works previously performed need not be repeated in all circumstances. Maintenance therefore defines an approach to minimizing redundancy in IT Security evaluation, allowing a determination to be made as to whether independent evaluator actions need to be re-performed.
    As a result, Maintenance enabled developers to provide assured products to the IT consumer in a timely and efficient manner.

  • The developer should report that it doesn't impact the assured level of security at all by one or more changes to the TOE in an Impact Analysis Report. It is necessary to execute an enough inspection with a technical background for that.

  • If the maintenance is repeated several times, please confirm there is no impact in not only the difference from the last changed TOE but also the change in total from the initially certified TOE.

  • Currently, the period for acceptance of maintenance is specified "within five years after taking the certification with CCV3.1" in JISEC. However, the period is scheduled to be reviewed.

  • The developer can only submit an Impact Analysis Report to the same Evaluation Facility under which the original evaluation was conducted.

3 Maintenance Process

  • The working processes of Maintenance is as follows;

4 Judgment of Maintenance

  • “Changes” made to a certified TOE subject to maintenance are not intended to apply to new products and functions derived from the certified TOE. Within the scope of security functional specifications that had been evaluated for the certified TOE, only those “changes,” for which, without requiring a third-party evaluation, developers (applicants) on their own responsibility can verify and claim that assurance will not be adversely affected, will be applicable for maintenance.
    This could be, for example:
    Within the scope of the security functions evaluated as the certified TOE;
    • the certified TOE with bug fixings or manual amendments.
    • addition of operating environment when those changes do not influence the function of TOE.
  • When the change doesn't obviously relate to the certified scope of the TOE, the changed TOE becomes the object of the maintenance.

5 Preparation of applying the Maintenance

  • The applicant must prepare the followings before applying;
  1. Creation of "Impact Analysis Report."

    The applicant makes "Impact Analysis Report" to prove that the successor product doesn't influence to the assurance level of the certified TOE.

    Please describe it according to the composition described in "Impact Analysis Report Preparation Guidance." The description forms other than the chapter composition are arbitrary, and there is no fixed format.

  2. Preliminary review of "Impact Analysis Report."
    The Certification Body confirms the validity of the maintenance before accepting the application.

    The applicant requests a preliminary review of "Checklist for Maintenance Application" (Addendum to the Impact Analysis Report Preparation Guidance) and "Impact Analysis Report" to the Certification Body.

    Please send those documents with information of the certification number to JISEC e-mail address when you request a preliminary review.

6 Application for Maintenance

  • Please apply according to the guidance for application if the validity of the maintenance is confirmed by the preliminary review. Documents necessary for application are as follows.
    • 1. Application for Maintenance (CCM-02-A Form 2)
      Please describe the overview of change of the TOE.
      The person responsible for the application affixes a name with signature or digital signature using a digital certificate (with applicant’s organization name).

      In the case that it is necessary to delegate the privileges of the person responsible for the application or the person in charge of the application to an agent, please submit a “letter of authorization” from the person responsible for the application.
    • 2. Impact Analysis Report x 1pcs or Electronic media
  • Please use application forms.

Guidance for application

7 Submitting of Application

  • The Certification Body will inform the applicant of the reception number and reception date if the submitted documents described above are found to be sufficient and complete.

  • Please note that the applicant might have to resubmit the application documents within a specified time period, in the case that the submitted documents are insufficient.

Change log

  • Jan 22, 2024

    • The definition of Assurance Continuity has been changed.