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Access control is a security aspect whose importancy increases with technology advances as it forms the core of any security system. Access control can be applied at the Operating System (OS) level, middle-ware level, or the application level. The objective of this investigation is to give a detailed overview of access control mechanisms implemented in various types of OSs like general purpose OSs, mobile OSs and distributed OSs. Finally, the paper outlines the main problems and challenges of access control, and proposes future directions in the access control field of research.
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