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Security News

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  • Containerized Security: The Next Evolution of Virtualization?

    We in the security industry have gotten into a bad habit of focusing the majority of our attention and marketing dollars on raising awareness of the latest emerging threats and new technologies being developed to detect them. One just has to look at the headlines or spend fifteen minutes walking the show floor at a major security conference to see this trend. However, while we are focusing on what all the bad guys are doing, we’ve taken the eye off the ball of where our infrastructure business is going.

  • SDN Security Researchers State Their Case at Black Hat

    So say two of his grad students, Seungsoo Lee and Changhoon Yoon (left and right, respectively, in the photo above). But along with Shin, who’s now an assistant professor at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (Kaist) and a research associate at the Open Networking Foundation (ONF), they’re hoping the industry is ready to start looking at the vulnerabilities that SDN introduces.

  • Widespread Linux Flaw Allows TCP Session Hijacking, Termination
  • Bungling Microsoft singlehandedly proves that golden backdoor keys are a terrible idea [Ed: Microsoft and backdoor should become synonymous. At every level, online and offline, Microsoft products booby-trapped with backdoors.]

    Microsoft leaked the golden keys that unlock Windows-powered tablets, phones and other devices sealed by Secure Boot – and is now scrambling to undo the blunder.

    These skeleton keys can be used to install non-Redmond operating systems on locked-down computers. In other words, on devices that do not allow you to disable Secure Boot even if you have administrator rights – such as ARM-based Windows RT tablets – it is now possible to sidestep this block and run, say, GNU/Linux or Android.

    What's more, it is believed it will be impossible for Microsoft to fully revoke the leaked keys.

    And perhaps most importantly: it is a reminder that demands by politicians and crimefighters for special keys, which can be used by investigators to unlock devices in criminal cases, will inevitably jeopardize the security of everyone.

    Microsoft's misstep was uncovered by two researchers, MY123 and Slipstream, who documented their findings here in a demoscene-themed writeup published on Tuesday. Slip believes Microsoft will find it impossible to undo its leak.

  • Microsoft Creates Backdoor In Windows, Accidentally Leaks UEFI Secure Boot Keys

    Two researchers reported that Microsoft accidentally compromised the golden keys to its UEFI Secure boot feature.

  • Can Copperhead OS fix Android's security problems?

Canonical Patches Multiple Kernel Vulnerabilities in All Supported Ubuntu OSes

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Today, August 10, 2016, Canonical published several security notices to inform Ubuntu Linux users about new kernel updates for their distributions, patching several vulnerabilities discovered recently.

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Internet of Insecurity

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  • Linux TCP flaw enables remote attacks

    Researchers at the University of California, Riverside, say they have found a weakness in the transmission control protocol (TCP) used by Linux since late 2012 which allows the remote hijacking of Internet communications.

  • Serious security threat to many Internet users highlighted
  • Your 'Smart' Thermostat Is Now Vulnerable To Ransomware

    We've noted time and time again how the much ballyhooed "internet of things" is a privacy and security dumpster fire, and the check is about to come due. Countless companies and "IoT" evangelists jumped head first into the profit party, few bothering to cast even a worried look over at the reality that basic security and privacy standards hadn't come along for the ride. The result has been an endless parade of not-so-smart devices and appliances that are busy either leaking your personal details or potentially putting your life at risk.

    Of course, the Internet of Things hype machine began with smart thermostats and the sexy, Apple-esque advertising of Nest. The fun and games didn't last however, especially after several botched firmware updates resulted in people being unable to heat or cool their homes (relatively essential for a thermostat).

Security News

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  • No, 900 million Android devices are not at risk from the 'Quadrooter' monster

    Guys, gals, aardvarks, fishes: I'm running out of ways to say this. Your Android device is not in any immediate danger of being taken over a super-scary malware monster.

    It's a silly thing to say, I realize, but we go through this same song and dance every few months: Some company comes out with a sensational headline about how millions upon millions of Android users are in danger (DANGER!) of being infected (HOLY HELL!) by a Big, Bad Virus™ (A WHAT?!) any second now. Countless media outlets (cough, cough) pick up the story and run with it, latching onto that same sensational language without actually understanding a lick about Android security or the context that surrounds it.

    To wit: As you've no doubt seen by now, our latest Android malware scare du jour is something an antivirus software company called Check Point has smartly dubbed "Quadrooter" (a name worthy of Batman villain status if I've ever heard one). The company is shouting from the rooftops that 900 million (MILLION!) users are at risk of data loss, privacy loss, and presumably also loss of all bladder control -- all because of this hell-raising "Quadrooter" demon and its presence on Qualcomm's mobile processors.

  • 900 Million Androids Could Be Easy Prey for QuadRooter Exploits
  • Annoying "Open PDF in Edge" Default Option Puts Windows 10 Users at Risk

    Microsoft released today its monthly security patch, and one of the five security bulletins labeled as critical was a remote code execution (RCE) flaw in its standard PDF rendering library that could be exploited when opening PDF files.

Security News

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Security News

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  • Computers That Don't Track You

    Todd Weaver, the Founder and CEO of Purism shows Leo Laporte and Aaron Newcomb the Librem line of secure Linux computers. They discuss PureOS the operating system based on Debian, and how the computers are sourced and built. Plus, he talks about their line of no-carrier, encrypted smartphone coming next year.

  • The state of cyber security: we’re all screwed

    When cybersecurity professionals converged in Las Vegas last week to expose vulnerabilities and swap hacking techniques at Black Hat and Defcon, a consistent theme emerged: the internet is broken, and if we don’t do something soon, we risk permanent damage to our economy.

    “Half of all Americans are backing away from the net due to fears regarding security and privacy,” longtime tech security guru Dan Kaminsky said in his Black Hat keynote speech, citing a July 2015 study by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. “We need to go ahead and get the internet fixed or risk losing this engine of beauty.”

  • Oh, not again: US reportedly finds new secret software in VW diesels [Ed: cannot trust proprietary software]

    Volkswagen first ended up in this situation after it admitted to intentionally installing secret software in its 2.0-liter diesels. That software curtailed nitrogen oxide emissions in lab-testing environments, but once on the road, the diesels would pollute well in excess of legal limitations. It was allegedly used in response to ever-stricter emissions regulations.

  • Chinese Hunting Chinese Over POP3 In Fjord Country

    More specifically, here at we've been seeing attempts at logging in to the pop3 mail retrieval service using usernames that sound distinctively like Chinese names, and the attempts originate almost exclusively from Chinese networks.

  • 'Sauron' spyware attacking targets in Belgium, China, Russia and Sweden

    A previously unknown hacking group called Strider has been conducting cyber espionage against selected targets in Belgium, China, Russia and Sweden, according to Symantec.

    The security firm suggested that the product of the espionage would be of interest to a nation state's intelligence services.

    Strider uses malware known as Remsec that appears primarily to have been designed for espionage, rather than as ransomware or any other nefarious software.

    Symantec has linked Strider with a group called Flamer which uses similar attack techniques and malware.

    The Lord of the Rings reference is deliberate as the Remsec stealth tool contains a reference to Sauron, the necromancer and main protagonist in a number of Tolkien's stories.

    "Strider has been active since at least October 2011. The group has maintained a low profile until now and its targets have been mainly organisations and individuals that would be of interest to a nation state's intelligence services," said Symantec in a blog post.

  • New MacBooks expected to feature Touch ID power button as well as OLED touch-panel [iophk: "as UID or password? Former is ok latter is insecure"]

    A source who has provided reliable information in the past has informed us that the new MacBook Pro models, expected to be launched in the fall, will feature a Touch ID power button as well as the previously-reported OLED touch-sensitive function keys.

  • it’s hard work printing nothing

    It all starts with a bug report to LibreSSL that the openssl tool crashes when it tries to print NULL. This bug doesn’t manifest on OpenBSD because libc will convert NULL strings to ”(null)” when printing. However, this behavior is not required, and as observed, it’s not universal. When snprintf silently accepts NULL, that simply leads to propagating the error.

  • London's Met Police has missed the Windows XP escape deadline [Ed: known problem, London's police is a prisoner of NSA and also China, Russia etc. [1, 2]]

    London’s Metropolitan Police has missed its deadline to dump Windows XP, with tens of thousands of copper still running the risky OS.

    The force, on the front line against terrorist threats and criminals in the capital city, is running Windows XP on around 27,000 PCs.

    At last count, in May 2015, the Met had a total of 35,640 PCs, with 34,920 of them running XP. Policemen set themselves a deadline of March 2016 to finish migrating to Windows 8.1.

    London Mayor Sadiq Khan, however, has apparently now revealed that just 8,000 of the force’s PCs have moved to Windows 8.1 since last September. The target is for another 6,000 by the end of September 2016.

    Khan provided the update in response to a question from Conservative Greater London Assembly member Andrew Boff.

  • Met Police still running Windows XP on 27,000 computers [iophk: "forget XP, Windows in general is dangerously out of date"]

    LONDON BOYS IN BLUE the Metropolitan Police may be armed with tasers and extendable batons, but they are backed up by Windows XP in a lot of cases, which is a really bad thing.

    Windows XP no longer gets official security updates, and Microsoft sees it as the sort of thing that should be scraped off shoes before walking on the carpet.

    The company will let people pay to keep using it, but only on a case-by-case basis. We do not know the police arrangement with Microsoft, but the Met needs to accelerate the updating of its computer systems as it puts Londoners' information at risk, according to London Assembly member Andrew Boff.

Security News

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Security News

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  • Protect yourself from cyberattacks

    3. Install Linux (free). One big decision making factor will be the age of your computer. If your hardware is old, you may well be better off replacing it with something new.

    I mentioned Linux, which has a few advantages. Windows as you are familiar with, is susceptible to infections by malware (viruses, adware, spyware, etc.), whereas Linux is practically invulnerable to infection. Part of that is down to the dominance of Windows, making it a big fat target, but it is also down to the Linux architecture making it extremely hard to hack. Another advantage with Linux (from my experience using Ubuntu), is that updates are generally installed without having to restart your machine. When a restart is needed, it is nice and quick, unlike a certain other operating system that spends ages ‘configuring updates’.

  • Nigerian Scammers Infect Themselves With Own Malware, Revealing New Wire-Wire Fraud Scheme [Ed: Windows]

    Once they’re in, the scammers allow the employee to continue with business as usual and discreetly monitor the account for potential financial transactions. As soon as they see that the employee is sending an invoice to a customer, they reroute it through their own email account and physically alter the account number and routing number before forwarding it on to the customer. The email address they use is often very similar to the original email address, so it’s easy to miss. Unlike spoofing, BEC techniques such as wire-wire rely on earning internal account access rather than externally impersonating a company account.

  • Is Hidden Linux Subsystem In Windows 10 Making Your PC Unsafe? [Ed: not any worse than a keylogger with back doors]
  • DARPA Cyber Grand Challenge Ends With Mayhem

    After three years of planning and lead-up contests, the finals of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's Cyber Grand Challenge (CGC) to show the best in autonomous computer security concluded with a win by the Mayhem system from the ForAllSecure team, which won the $2 million grand prize. The Xandra system finished in second place, winning $1 million, while the Mechaphish system placed third, claiming $750,000.

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More in Tux Machines

Red Hat and Fedora

Rackspace and FOSS Report

  • The Rackspace State of Open Source
    As the OpenStack Summit in Barcelona kicks off, Rackspace has released a report entitled ‘The State of Open Source’. With every conference seemingly extolling the virtues of open source software, this report is timely. It manages to differentiate between enterprise open source and the wider open source software market.
  • Why digital transformation needs open source
    As if there wasn't already ample reason for businesses to switch to open source, Forrester analysts Paul Miller and Lauren E Nelson released a report in April 2016, entitled Open Source Powers Enterprise Digital Transformation — CIOs Need To Embrace Open Source Software To Drive Change, which further drives the point.
  • Despite Security Fears, Open Source Is Fuelling Innovation and Cost Savings in UK Businesses
  • Security concerns fail to hold back UK open source success
    However, despite its increasingly common use, many (54%) still perceive external security threats to be a big barrier to adoption, that’s according to a report published by Rackspace. The State of Open Source study, which was conducted among IT decision makers in UK businesses with over 1,000 employees and revenues over £500m, and looks at the ways open source is being used, its benefits, but also what is holding back adoption and business concerns. According to the report open source has come of age with 85% using open source technology to migrate a closed source project to open source. Open source also isn’t just a tool for small businesses; the vast majority (90%) of large businesses are now deploying open source-based enterprise applications, with 25% being completely open source. The reason for the growing adoption is because of the money and time savings. Rackspace found that for each project that had been migrated to open source technology, six out of ten organisations saved on average £30,146 and reduced project lifecycle by six months. Greater innovation was reported by many (49%), and 46% were driven to open source because of the competitive opportunities. Additionally, just under half (45%) said that it enabled them to get products and services to market faster. John Engates, Chief Technology Officer at Rackspace, said: “While open source technologies have been around for many years, it is great to see that enterprise businesses are finally dipping their toes in and seeing the tangible benefits.

FOSS and Blockchain

Security Leftovers

  • The internet apocalypse map hides the major vulnerability that created it
    During Friday’s massive distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on DNS service provider Dyn, one might be forgiven for mistaking the maps of network outages for images of some post-apocalyptic nuclear fallout. Screenshots from sites like showed menacingly red, fuzzy heat maps of, well, effectively just population centers of the United States experiencing serious difficulty accessing Twitter, Github, Etsy, or any of Dyn's other high-profile clients. Aside from offering little detail and making a DDoS literally into a glowing red menace, they also obscured the reality of just how centralized a lot of internet infrastructure really is. DNS is ground zero for the uneasy tension of the internet’s presumed decentralized resilience and the reality that as of now, translating IP addresses into domain names requires some kind of centralized, hierarchical platform, and that’s probably not going to radically change anytime soon. Other maps provided by various business to business network infrastructure companies weren’t much more helpful. These maps seem to exist mostly to signal that the companies in question have lots of cool data and that it can be made into a flashy map — which might impress potential customers, but that doesn’t offer a ton of insights for the layperson. For example, threat intelligence company Norse's map appears to be mostly a homage to the Matthew Broderick movie War Games: a constant barrage of DDoS attacks beaming like space invader rockets across a world map. Akamai has an impressive 3D visualization that renders traffic as points beaming into the atmosphere. And website monitoring service Pingdom offers a dot map at such a far-out zoom level that it's essentially useless for seeking out more meaningful patterns than "outages happen in population centers, also there are a lot of outages."
  • CoreOS Patched Against the "Dirty COW" Linux Kernel Vulnerability, Update Now
  • World’s first hack-proof router launched
    Turris Omnia router, tagged the world’s first hack-proof router, was launched yesterday at the CES Unveiled Show in Prague, Czech Republic. As an essential part of any home internet network, routers are rather poorly secured and protected against cyber attack. More often than not, the only security feature is the default password. With easily required internet knowledge and some skills, these routers can be hacked, providing unauthorized access to a complete internet network. From there on, anything is possible.