Oracle supports the Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) standard for 140-2.
E.1 About the Oracle Database FIPS 140-2 Settings
The Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) standard, 140-2, is a U.S. government standard that defines cryptographic module security requirements.
The FIPS 140-2 cryptographic libraries are designed to protect data at rest and in transit over the network.
Oracle Database uses these cryptographic libraries for Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), Transparent Data Encryption (TDE), and
DBMS_CRYPTO PL/SQL package.
To verify the current status of the certification, you can find information at the Computer Security Resource Center (CSRC) Web site address from the National Institute of Standards and Technology:
You can find information specific to FIPS by searching for
Validated FIPS 140 Cryptographic Modules. The security policy, which is available on this site upon successful certification, includes requirements for secure configuration of the host operating system.
The Oracle Database FIPS settings are meant to enforce the use of FIPS-approved algorithms for the Oracle database only. The use of third-party vendor software with Oracle Database running in FIPS mode must use FIPS-approved algorithms or else the vendor software will encounter failures.
E.2 Configuring FIPS 140-2 for Transparent Data Encryption and DBMS_CRYPTO
DBFIPS_140 initialization parameter configures FIPS mode.
- To configure Transparent Data Encryption and the
DBMS_CRYPTOPL/SQL package program units to run in FIPS mode, set the
DBFIPS_140initialization parameter to
TRUE.The effect of this parameter depends on the platform.
- Restart the database.
Table E-1 describes how the
DBFIPS_140 parameter affects various platforms.
Table E-1 How the DBFIPS_140 Initialization Parameter Affects Platforms
|Platform||Effect of Setting DBFIPS_140 to TRUE or FALSE|
Linux or Windows on Intel x86_64
Solaris 11.1+ on either SPARC T-series or Intel x86_64
Other operating systems or hardware
Be aware that setting
TRUE and thus using the underlying library in FIPS mode incurs a certain amount of overhead when the library is first loaded. This is due to the verification of the signature and the execution of the self tests on the library. Once the library is loaded, then there is no other impact on performance.
Oracle Database Reference for more information about the
DBFIPS_140 initialization parameter
E.3 Configuration of FIPS 140-2 for Secure Sockets Layer
SSLFIPS_140 parameter configures Secure Sockets Layer (SSL).
E.3.1 Configuring the SSLFIPS_140 and SSLFIPS_LIB Parameters for Secure Sockets Layer
To configure FIPS 140-2 for SSL, you must set the
SSLFIPS_140 parameter. If you are using the Oracle Instant Client, then you must set the
SSLFIPS_LIB parameter as well.
SSLFIPS_140parameter configures the Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) adapter to run in FIPS mode.
SSLFIPS_LIBsets the location of the FIPS library.
- Ensure that the
fips.orafile is either located in the
/ldap/admindirectory, or is in a location pointed to by the
- In the
fips.orafile, set the
TRUEso that the SSL adapter can run in FIPS mode. For example:
This parameter is
- If you are using Oracle Instant Client, then set
SSLFIPS_LIBto the location of the FIPS library. For example:
- Repeat this procedure in any Oracle Database home for any database server or client.
When you set
TRUE, Secure Sockets Layer cryptographic operations take place in the embedded RSA/Micro Edition Suite (MES) library in FIPS mode. These cryptographic operations are accelerated by the CPU when hardware acceleration is available and properly configured in the host hardware and software.
If you set
FALSE, then Secure Sockets Layer cryptographic operations take place in the embedded RSA/Micro Edition Suite (MES) library in non-FIPS mode, and as with the
TRUE setting, the operations are accelerated if possible.
For native encryption, this behavior of cryptographic operations landing in RSA/Micro Edition Suite (MES) and being accelerated is similar to the above, except that it is determined by the
FIPS_140 setting in
sqlnet.ora (instead of the
SSL_FIPS140 setting in
SSLFIPS_140 parameter replaces the
SQLNET.SSLFIPS_140 parameter used in Oracle Database 10g release 2 (10.2). You must set the parameter in the
fips.ora file, and not the
E.3.2 Approved SSL Cipher Suites for FIPS 140-2
A cipher suite is a set of authentication, encryption, and data integrity algorithms that exchange messages between network nodes.
During an SSL handshake, for example, the two nodes negotiate to see as to which cipher suite they will use when transmitting messages back and forth.
Only the following cipher suites are approved for FIPS validation:
Oracle Database SSL cipher suites are automatically set to FIPS approved cipher suites. If you wish to configure specific cipher suites, you can do so by editing the
SSL_CIPHER_SUITES parameter in the
sqlnet.ora or the
You can also use Oracle Net Manager to set this parameter on the server and the client.
E.4 Postinstallation Checks for FIPS 140-2
After you configure the FIPS 140-2 settings, you must verify permissions in the operating system.
The permissions are as follows:
Set execute permissions on all Oracle executable files to prevent the execution of Oracle Cryptographic Libraries by users who are unauthorized to do so, in accordance with the system security policy.
Set read and write permissions on all Oracle executable files to prevent accidental or deliberate reading or modification of Oracle Cryptographic Libraries by any user.
To comply with FIPS 140-2 Level 2 requirements, in the security policy, include procedures to prevent unauthorized users from reading, modifying or executing Oracle Cryptographic Libraries processes and the memory they are using in the operating system.
E.5 Verifying FIPS 140-2 Connections
To check if FIPS mode is enabled for SSL, you can enable tracing in the
- Add the following lines to
sqlnet.orato enable tracing:
trace_directory_server=trace_directory trace_file_server=trace_file trace_level_server=trace_level
trace_directory=/private/oracle/owm trace_file_server=fips_trace.trc trace_level_server=6
- To check if FIPS mode is enabled for TDE and
DBMS_CRYPTO, log into SQL*Plus and run the following command:
SHOW PARAMETER DBFIPS_140
Trace level 6 is the minimum trace level required to check the results of the FIPS self-tests.