Open Source Security Compliance Solution: OpenSCAP

Type n0where
Reporter N0where
Modified 2010-06-25T16:58:00


The OpenSCAP Project was created to provide an open-source framework to the community which enables integration with the Security Content Automation Protocol (SCAP) suite of standards and capabilities. It is the goal of OpenSCAP to provide a simple, easy to use set of interfaces to serve as the framework for community use of SCAP.

SCAP is a line of standards managed by NIST. It was created to provide a standardized approach to maintaining the security of enterprise systems , such as automatically verifying the presence of patches, checking system security configuration settings, and examining systems for signs of compromise.

The SCAP suite contains multiple complex data exchange formats that are to be used to transmit important vulnerability, configuration, and other security data. Historically, there have been few tools that provide a way to query this data in the needed format. This lack of tools makes the barrier to entry very high and discourages adoption of these protocols by the community. It’s our goal to create a framework of libraries to improve the accessibility of SCAP and enhance the usability of the information it represents. Tools for parsing SCAP documents and querying content must be created to achieve this. This requires common set of interfaces to be defined and implemented to meet this need. It is the intent of this project to provide these interfaces and functional examples that would allow others in the open-source and vendor communities to make use of SCAP while minimizing the effort needed to gain value from it.


  • Common – Objects and mechanisms used across all parts of library.
  • CCE – Common Configuration Enumeration
  • CPE – Common Platform Enumeration
  • CVE – Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures
  • CVSS – Common Vulnerability Scoring System
  • OVAL – Open Vulnerability and Assessment Language
  • XCCDF – Extensible Configuration Checklist Description Format
  • XCCDF_POLICY – Policy interface to XCCDF benchmark

Open Source Security Compliance Solution: OpenSCAP Documentation

Open Source Security Compliance Solution: OpenSCAP Download