Role-based viewing envelopes for information protection in collaborative modeling

Christopher D. Cera, Tawseong Kim, Jung Hyun Han, William C. Regli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)


Information security and assurance are new frontiers for collaborative design. In this context, information assurance (IA) refers to methodologies to protect engineering information by ensuring its availability, confidentiality, integrity, non-repudiation, authentication, access control, etc. In collaborative design, IA techniques are needed to protect intellectual property, establish security privileges and create 'need to know' protections on critical features. Aside from 3D watermarking, research on how to provide IA to distributed collaborative engineering teams is largely non-existent. This paper provides a framework for IA within collaborative design. It is based on a technique we call role-based viewing, which is achieved through integration of multi-resolution geometry and security models. In this way, 3D models are geometrically partitioned, and the partitioning is used to create multi-resolution mesh hierarchies that obscure, obfuscate, or remove sensitive material from the view of users without appropriate permissions. This approach is the basis for our prototype system FACADE (the Framework for Accesscontrol in Computer-Aided Design Environments), a synchronous multi-user collaborative modeling environment. In FACADE, groups of users work in a shared 3D modeling environment in which each user's viewing and modeling privileges are managed by a central access control mechanism. In this manner, individual users see only the data they are allowed to see, at the level of detail they are permitted to see it.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)873-886
Number of pages14
JournalCAD Computer Aided Design
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2004 Aug
Externally publishedYes


  • Access control
  • Collaborative/distributed design
  • Multi-resolution modeling
  • Role-based viewing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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