The SABSA Foundation Modules present an introduction to the SABSA methodology and its application in building business-driven, traceable and cost-effective security architectures. This course gives delegates the opportunity to attain the SABSA Chartered Architect – Foundation Level (SCF) certification and is the first step to attaining a security certification that measures the holder’s ability to actually design and build security architectures that enable the business rather than demonstrating candidates can simply pass a test.
The official SABSA Foundation Material is based on the 2005 “SABSA Blue Book”, Enterprise Security Architecture: A Business-driven Approach by John Sherwood, David Lynas and Andy Clark. However, since 2007, the material has been greatly expanded and updated. Prior exposure to the “Blue Book” is not required, as all SABSA concepts covered in the certification examination will be covered during the course.
As the starting point for SABSA certification, there are no specific prerequisites to attending a Foundation course. Exposure or experience in software architecture, enterprise architecture, information security, infrastructure security, or risk management is helpful, however.
Course Format & Structure
The Foundation Modules are delivered as a combination of lecture, group discussion and group workshops. The lecture, case studies, examples and discussions introduce and define the concepts, and the workshops progressively demonstrate the core activities and develop the key artifacts comprising the SABSA method using a simplified, fictitious global banking organization drawn from real-world SABSA implementation projects.
Unlike the other SABSA training materials, the Foundation Modules are presented together in a single, 5-day course which includes sitting the certification examination for each module in the afternoon of the last day. In most cases, Module F1 is presented over the course of days 1-3, and module F2 is presented day 4 and the morning of day 5.
Rest assured, while this seems like it will be a challenge to sufficiently cover the material for successfully passing the certification examination, since Module F2 expands the core concepts and frameworks already covered in great depth during Module F1, most candidates are comfortable with the pace and successfully obtain their SCF certification.
SCF Examination Format
Foundation level examinations consist of 2 modules of 48 multiple choice questions equally distributed through 6 knowledge domains (the columns of the SABSA matrix)
Each Foundation Module has a separate examination – in English – of 48 multiple choice questions equally drawn from the 6 SABSA knowledge domains corresponding to the columns of the SABSA matrix. Candidates are given one hour per module, with an optional 15 minutes of extra time per module in the event that English is not the native language of the candidate, giving up to 30 minutes of additional time for the two modules.
NOTE: it is important to ensure candidates specifically request the extra language allowance during course registration or it may not be given on the day of the examinations.
To obtain the SCF certification, candidates must score at least 75% (36 correct of 48) for each of Modules F1 and F2. Additionally, candidates must score a minimum of 60% in 4 of the 6 knowledge domains in each of Modules F1 and F2 in order to be awarded Foundation Level certification.
The first module of the Foundation course provides an overview and brief history of the SABSA methodology, including information about the certification program before setting the stage for what problems SABSA was developed to solve and how it is unique in demonstrating security is an enabler for business rather than something preventing business from happening.
Module F1 covers the first of the 4 phases of the SABSA Lifecycle: Strategy & Planning, Design, Implement and Manage & Measure. The activities, frameworks and deliverables covered in this module correspond to the first two layers of SABSA Architecture, the Contextual Architecture and the Conceptual Architecture.
Both of the Foundation course modules are structured to follow the columns of the SABSA Architecture Matrix and discuss the key objectives, frameworks, tools and techniques for each column within the SABSA Strategy & Planning lifecycle phase.
- SABSA Executive Summary
- SABSA Certification Programme
- SABSA Principles & Objectives
- SABSA Framework Overview
- Business Requirements & SABSA Attributes Profile Concept
- SABSA Risk & Opportunity Concept
- SABSA Policy Architecture Concept
- SABSA Architecture Strength-in-Depth Engineering Concepts
- SABSA Governance, Roles & Responsibilities Concepts
- SABSA Domain Concepts
- SABSA Time & Performance Management Concepts
The second Foundation module builds on the first module and expands on the core SABSA concepts and activities of the Security Strategy and Planning phase to realize those plans in a designed, implemented and managed security architecture. Software architects, software engineers and security professionals will generally resonate and relate more easily to the material in Module F2 as it is often closer to their day-to-day professional activities.
Key concepts covered in Module F2 include approaches for getting started building security architectures using SABSA and integrating and aligning SABSA with other architecture frameworks, standards and methodologies such as the TOGAF® and Zachman Enterprise Architecture Frameworks, ISO 20,000/ITIL, ISO 27,001/2, ISO 31,000, CoBIT, NIST and Balanced Scorecard.
Module F2 covers the remainder of the SABSA Lifecycle phases: Design, Implement and Manage & Measure. The activities, frameworks and deliverables covered in this module correspond to layers 3, 4 and 5 of SABSA Architecture, the Logical Architecture, the Physical Architecture and the Component Architecture.
- Asset Architecture & Management
- Risk & Policy Management Architecture
- Transformation & Service Architecture
- Entity & Trust Framework
- Inter-domain Security Associations
- Service Sequencing & Performance