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Security Leftovers

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Security
  • 36C3: Open Source Is Insufficient To Solve Trust Problems In Hardware

    With open source software, we’ve grown accustomed to a certain level of trust that whatever we are running on our computers is what we expect it to actually be. Thanks to hashing and public key signatures in various parts in the development and deployment cycle, it’s hard for a third party to modify source code or executables without us being easily able to spot it, even if it travels through untrustworthy channels.

    Unfortunately, when it comes to open source hardware, the number of steps and parties involved that are out of our control until we have a final product — production, logistics, distribution, even the customer — makes it substantially more difficult to achieve the same peace of mind. To make things worse, to actually validate the hardware on chip level, you’d ultimately have to destroy it.

    On his talk this year at the 36C3, [bunnie] showed a detailed insight of several attack vectors we could face during manufacturing. Skipping the obvious ones like adding or substituting components, he’s focusing on highly ambitious and hard to detect modifications inside an IC’s package with wirebonded or through-silicon via (TSV) implants, down to modifying the netlist or mask of the integrated circuit itself. And these aren’t any theoretical or “what if” scenarios, but actual possible options — of course, some of them come with a certain price tag, but in the end, with the right motivation, money is only a detail.

  • Election security, ransomware dominate cyber concerns for 2020 [iophk: Windows TCO]

    Senate Democrats have repeatedly tried to force Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to schedule votes on a raft of various election security bills. The House has passed three major pieces of election security legislation this year that have stalled amid Republican objections in the Senate.

  • There’s Money To Be Made In Taming Open Source Software Code

    “We’re trying to create order out of chaos,” said CEO Wayne Jackson of his company, Sonatype.

    [...]

    “We are building the world’s critical infrastructure on software somebody else wrote, a stranger with unknown skills, motivations and desires, but the desire to innovate is so high, we’re willing to accept the risk of using some random person’s software invention,” Jackson said.

    Sometimes developers understand the practical use of the open source code they’re creating, and sometimes they don’t, according to Jackson. 

  • Medley India Infosolution helps Indian Railways build crew management software system

    The system design is end-to-end UNIX and Linux thereby immunising the systems against malicious threats. The solution has with immense power to control the client locations from central location by way of maintenance tasks, time synchronisation, patch updates and variety of user access requirements thus speeding up the service request handling from a remote location. Service requests can be lodged into the CMS system and are automated through SMS call lodging and reminder mechanisms. At the client side the users are authenticated via a biometric device (thumb impression reader) for logging onto the applications via a kiosk which ensures an audit trail and logging of activities for transparency and accountability.

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