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Security: Patches, Whonix, IPFire and More

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Security
  • Security updates for Thursday

    Security updates have been issued by CentOS (kernel, ksh, python-pillow, and thunderbird), Debian (opensmtpd, proftpd-dfsg, and rake), Fedora (NetworkManager-ssh), openSUSE (chromium), and SUSE (libexif, mariadb, ovmf, python3, and squid). 

  • Whonix VirtualBox 15.0.0.8.9 - Point Release! - vanguards; TCP ISN Leak Protection; Extensive Hardening!

    This is a point release.

    Download Whonix for VirtualBox:

  • Build your career in Computer Forensics: List of Digital Forensic Tools - Part I

    Digital devices are present everywhere and considered to be the primary source of evidence in the case of cybercrime. Out of all the devices, phones and laptops are the top weapons used in cybercrimes. Regardless of who the device belonged to, either the victim or suspect, it offers an abundance of data to investigate the crime. But retrieving evidence from these devices in a secure environment can be very challenging. To overcome the time constraint and other complications, cyber forensic professionals use digital forensic tools.  

  • What are Open Source Security Approaches? With Examples

    Open source security approaches enable organizations to secure their applications and networks while avoiding expensive proprietary security offerings. 

    An open source approach allows organizations to secure their applications across cloud providers and other platforms using platform-agnostic APIs. These APIs are written by contributors to the open source software code while cloud providers may use open source code that allows the open APIs to connect to the cloud.

    Open source approaches, for security or not, also bring in collaboration across an industry. It isn’t just one organization that benefits from a program or technology, but everyone who contributes to and uses it.

    The open source projects and programs used as examples in this article come from two major open source entities: The Linux Foundation and the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF). The two also work closely together to further the projects under their purview.

  • Cloud Snooper: Hackers Using Linux Kernel Driver To Attack Cloud Server [Ed: So, if you install malicious software in Linux, due to recklessness or sabotage, it'll do malicious things. How is that a Linux weakness?]

    Whether you’re a Linux user or not, you must have heard the buzzword about the Linux — “Best OS for security.” Well, it is true, but being a computer program, Linux also has some downside that challenges its security.

    Talking about the security risks, recently, SophosLab published a report about a new malware dubbed Cloud Snooper, that can compromise the security of any Linux or other OS based servers by deploying a kernel driver.

  • IPFire on AWS: Update to IPFire 2.25 - Core Update 141

    Today, we have updated IPFire on AWS to IPFire 2.25 - Core Update 141 - the latest official release of IPFire.

    Since IPFire is available on AWS, we are gaining more and more users who are securing their cloud infrastructure behind an easy to configure, yet fast and secure firewall.

    This update adds the rewritten DNS stack and brings many bug fixes to the cloud.

More FUD

  • The “Cloud Snooper” malware that sneaks into your Linux servers [Ed: Sophos citing itself, hyping up the threat is installing malicious software on one's own server]

    SophosLabs has just published a detailed report about a malware attack dubbed Cloud Snooper.

    The reason for the name is not so much that the attack is cloud-specific (the technique could be used against pretty much any server, wherever it’s hosted), but that it’s a sneaky way for cybercrooks to open up your server to the cloud, in ways you very definitely don’t want, “from the inside out”.

    The Cloud Snooper report covers a whole raft of related malware samples that our researchers found deployed in combination.

OpenSMTPD

  • OpenSMTPD Email Server Vulnerability Threatens Many Linux and BSD Systems [Ed: It is this package, not the operating systems (GNU/Linux rarely uses this)]

    A critical vulnerability has been discovered in the OpenBSD email server OpenSMTPD. Exploiting the flaw could allow remote code execution attacks. The seriousness of the vulnerability poses a threat to the integrity of OpenBSD and Linux systems.

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More in Tux Machines

today's howtos

Python Programming

  • Duck Typing

    Duck typing is the idea that instead of checking the type of something in Python, we tend to check what behavior it supports (often by attempting to use the behavior and catching an exception if it doesn't work).

  • The Iterator Protocol

    Iterators are all over the place in Python. You can often get away without knowing and understanding the word "iterator", but understanding this term will help you understand how you can expect various iterator-powered utilities in Python to actually work.

  • How I learnt Django

    I am a Python developer and I love writing and building awesome stuff for people to use. This is a quick post for newbies about to dive into Django, here I'll give short summaries of my experience in learning Django and tips/advice on how to work with Django.

  • Contrast sinks fangs into Python

    Contrast Security is one of those firms talking about the new breed of so-called self-protecting software, where AI and machine learning come to the fore with predictive functions make our infrastructure layers ever more autonomous. The company is now focused on the open source programming language Python due to its widespread use in web application development. As many readers will know, Python is a dynamic language equipped with built-in data structures and simple syntax – which makes it attractive for rapid application development as well as a scripting language. In terms of use, Python is used by Netflix to stream videos to more than 100 million homes worldwide, power the photo-sharing site Instagram and aid NASA in space exploration. [...] Contrast’s platform includes: Interactive application security testing (IAST), which is run in preproduction, detects vulnerabilities in both custom code and libraries during normal use by gathering data from running code.Software composition analysis (SCA), which analyses libraries to identify potentially vulnerable third-party and open-source components.

  • Splitwise Telegram Bot

    Splitwise is a free tool for friends and roommates to track bills and other shared expenses. I created a telegram bot with which you can integrate your Splitwise account and can use Telegram for managing your expenses.

Three years of postmarketOS

We have over 200 booting devices now. Yes, booting is the operative word, with most of these ports you get more of a Raspberry Pi alternative than a functional phone experience with postmarketOS. Therefore, we started to categorize the devices. All existing device ports have been moved to the testing category, and can be moved to community or main depending on which features are working and how well maintained a port is. Only community and main devices will be cherry-picked to the stable branch. Currently the only device in the main category is the QEMU virtual device. It doesn't have any special hardware like a modem or GPS, so it was easy to make it comply with the requirements for main. Once some minor changes are done to the PinePhone port, it can be moved from community to main as well. There are also some devices pending to be moved into community from testing, like the Nokia N900, Xiaomi Redmi 4X, Motorola Moto G4 Play, Samsung Galaxy A3, Samsung Galaxy A5, Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini Value Edition and Wileyfox Swift. This is mostly possible, because they run a mainline Linux kernel already, or in case of the MSM8916, are currently being mainlined. The MSM8974 devices are also candidates, such as the Nexus 5, Fairphone 2, OnePlus One and the Samsung Galaxy S5. Earlier concepts of a channel-agnostic pmdevices repository were scrapped. This would allow using the same device packages with both the edge and stable channels, but at the price of making the device packages more complicated. Instead of doing that, we will treat the device specific packages like other packages and cherry-pick only the rather risk-free patches to the stable branch. Read more

Java Leftovers

  • Java at 25: Pluralsight's Teachers Weigh In

    Oracle kicked off its celebration of Java's 25th anniversary, which arrived officially on Saturday, with ... you guessed it: online content. It's disappointing not to be able to celebrate the language and platform that is, let's face it, running world IRL. But Big Red mounted an able effort on its "Moved-by-Java" site with inspiring personal stories from its Java team and the larger Java community, many of which are genuinely inspiring. If you haven't already, be sure to check it out. I was a bit ahead of the festivities last month when I talked with Rich Sharples, senior director of product management at Red Hat, about how Java had faired over the years compared with other technologies debuting in 1995. Feel free to check that out, too.

  • How Java helps deliver the groceries

    Did James Gosling and his team of developers ever predict the sheer breadth of complex challenges Java helps solve today? From helping build mobile apps, to managing the intricacies of delivering groceries through intelligent robotics and automation, here’s why Java is a key language we’ve chosen for our mission to transform the online grocery sector through intelligent software and automation technology.

  • Why the pull request process could work beyond development - Coffee Talk: Java, News, Stories and Opinions: Why the pull request process could work beyond development

    The open source movement has changed the way we make software. The developer community always has access to publicly available code to edit and improve software quality. [...] For example, as good as my Node.JS programming skills might be — and on a good day they can be quite good — do you really want me to have my way with the Docker engine source? First off, I don’t have any real expertise with Go — the language in which Docker and the Docker engine are written — beyond writing a Hello World. Second, even if I could program effectively in Go, I don’t have the proper understanding about the Docker engine required to make a useful contribution. But as the saying goes, give a developer a source code editor, a compiler and an internet full of documentation and the next thing you know, for better or worse, you’ll have code that wants to make its way into the world.