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Security

Security Leftovers

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Security
  • Stop using SHA1 encryption: It’s now completely unsafe, Google proves

    Security researchers have achieved the first real-world collision attack against the SHA-1 hash function, producing two different PDF files with the same SHA-1 signature. This shows that the algorithm's use for security-sensitive functions should be discontinued as soon as possible.

    SHA-1 (Secure Hash Algorithm 1) dates back to 1995 and has been known to be vulnerable to theoretical attacks since 2005. The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology has banned the use of SHA-1 by U.S. federal agencies since 2010, and digital certificate authorities have not been allowed to issue SHA-1-signed certificates since Jan. 1, 2016, although some exemptions have been made.

    However, despite these efforts to phase out the use of SHA-1 in some areas, the algorithm is still fairly widely used to validate credit card transactions, electronic documents, email PGP/GPG signatures, open-source software repositories, backups and software updates.

  • on pgp

    First and foremost I have to pay respect to PGP, it was an important weapon in the first cryptowar. It has helped many whistleblowers and dissidents. It is software with quite interesting history, if all the cryptograms could tell... PGP is also deeply misunderstood, it is a highly successful political tool. It was essential in getting crypto out to the people. In my view PGP is not dead, it's just old and misunderstood and needs to be retired in honor.

    However the world has changed from the internet happy times of the '90s, from a passive adversary to many active ones - with cheap commercially available malware as turn-key-solutions, intrusive apps, malware, NSLs, gag orders, etc.

  • Cloudflare’s Cloudbleed is the worst privacy leak in recent Internet history

    Cloudflare revealed today that, for months, all of its protected websites were potentially leaking private information across the Internet. Specifically, Cloudflare’s reverse proxies were dumping uninitialized memory; that is to say, bleeding private data. The issue, termed Cloudbleed by some (but not its discoverer Tavis Ormandy of Google Project Zero), is the greatest privacy leak of 2017 and the year has just started.

    For months, since 2016-09-22 by their own admission, CloudFlare has been leaking private information through Cloudbleed. Basically, random data from random sites (again, it’s worth mentioning that every site that used CloudFlare in the last half year should be considered to having fallen victim to this) would be randomly distributed across the open Internet, and then indefinitely cached along the way.

  • Serious Cloudflare bug exposed a potpourri of secret customer data

    Cloudflare, a service that helps optimize the security and performance of more than 5.5 million websites, warned customers today that a recently fixed software bug exposed a range of sensitive information that could have included passwords and cookies and tokens used to authenticate users.

    A combination of factors made the bug particularly severe. First, the leakage may have been active since September 22, nearly five months before it was discovered, although the greatest period of impact was from February 13 and February 18. Second, some of the highly sensitive data that was leaked was cached by Google and other search engines. The result was that for the entire time the bug was active, hackers had the ability to access the data in real-time by making Web requests to affected websites and to access some of the leaked data later by crafting queries on search engines.

    "The bug was serious because the leaked memory could contain private information and because it had been cached by search engines," Cloudflare CTO John Graham-Cumming wrote in a blog post published Thursday. "We are disclosing this problem now as we are satisfied that search engine caches have now been cleared of sensitive information. We have also not discovered any evidence of malicious exploits of the bug or other reports of its existence."

Security Leftovers

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Security
  • Change all the passwords (again)

    Looks like it is time to change all the passwords again. There’s a tiny little flaw in a CDN used … everywhere, it seems.

  • Today's leading causes of DDoS attacks [Ed: The so-called 'Internet of things' (crappy devices with identical passwords) is a mess; programmers to blame, not Linux]

    Of the most recent mega 100Gbps attacks in the last quarter, most of them were directly attributed to the Mirai botnet. The Mirai botnet works by exploiting the weak security on many Internet of Things (IoT) devices. The program finds its victims by constantly scanning the internet for IoT devices, which use factory default or hard-coded usernames and passwords.

  • How to Set Up An SSL Certificate on Your Website [via "Steps To Secure Your Website With An SSL Certificate"]
  • SHA-1 is dead, long live SHA-1!

    Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you heard that some researchers managed to create a SHA-1 collision. The short story as to why this matters is the whole purpose of a hashing algorithm is to make it impossible to generate collisions on purpose. Unfortunately though impossible things are usually also impossible so in reality we just make sure it’s really really hard to generate a collision. Thanks to Moore’s Law, hard things don’t stay hard forever. This is why MD5 had to go live on a farm out in the country, and we’re not allowed to see it anymore … because it’s having too much fun. SHA-1 will get to join it soon.

  • SHA1 collision via ASCII art

    Happy SHA1 collision day everybody!

    If you extract the differences between the good.pdf and bad.pdf attached to the paper, you'll find it all comes down to a small ~128 byte chunk of random-looking binary data that varies between the files.

  • PayThink Knowledge is power in fighting new Android attack bot

    Android users and apps have become a major part of payments and financial services, carrying an increased risk for web crime.

    It is estimated that there are 107.7 million Android Smartphone users in the U.S. who have downloaded more than 65 million apps from the Google App Store, and each one of them represents a smorgasbord of opportunity for hackers to steal user credentials and other information.

  • Red Hat: 'use after free' vulnerability found in Linux kernel's DCCP protocol IPV6 implementation

    Red Hat Product Security has published details of an "important" security vulnerability in the Linux kernel. The IPv6 implementation of the DCCP protocol means that it is possible for a local, unprivileged user to alter kernel memory and escalate their privileges.

    Known as the "use-after-free" flaw, CVE-2017-6074 affects a number of Red Hat products including Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 and Red Hat Openshift Online v2. Mitigating factors include the requirement for a potential attacker to have access to a local account on a machine, and for IPV6 to be enabled, but it is still something that will be of concern to Linux users.

    Describing the vulnerability, Red Hat says: "This flaw allows an attacker with an account on the local system to potentially elevate privileges. This class of flaw is commonly referred to as UAF (Use After Free.) Flaws of this nature are generally exploited by exercising a code path that accesses memory via a pointer that no longer references an in use allocation due to an earlier free() operation. In this specific issue, the flaw exists in the DCCP networking code and can be reached by a malicious actor with sufficient access to initiate a DCCP network connection on any local interface. Successful exploitation may result in crashing of the host kernel, potential execution of code in the context of the host kernel or other escalation of privilege by modifying kernel memory structures."

Security News

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Security

Security Leftovers

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Security
  • Wednesday's security advisories
  • Smartphones with fingerprint scanners under screen to hit market this year

    The majority of fingerprint scanners can be found either on the back of a smartphone or on the front, embedded in the home button. But it looks like that status quo is soon about to change. According to a report from The Investor, CrucialTec, a manufacturer of fingerprint modules based in South Korea, will launch its on-screen fingerprint scanning solution that allows you to unlock your device by placing a finger on the screen sometime this year.

    This means that we can expect to see the first smartphones featuring the new fingerprint technology hit the market in 2017. Unfortunately, CrucialTec did not reveal an exact time frame or the smartphone manufacturers it is currently working with.

  • Kaspersky launches 'secure operating system' -- with no trace of Linux in it [Ed: You must be pretty desperate for headlines and attention when your marketing pitch is, "we're not Linux!"]
  • Windows Botnet Spreading Mirai Variant

    A Chinese-speaking attacker is spreading a Mirai variant from a repurposed Windows-based botnet.

    Researchers at Kaspersky Lab published a report today, and said the code was written by an experienced developer who also built in the capability to spread the IoT malware to Linux machines under certain conditions.

  • Five New Linux Kernel Vulnerabilities Were Fixed in Ubuntu 16.10, 14.04 & 12.04

    We reported earlier that Canonical published multiple security advisories to inform Ubuntu users about the availability of new kernel updates that patch several flaws discovered recently by various developers.

    We've already told you about the issues that are affecting Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and Ubuntu 16.04.1 LTS (Xenial Xerus) users, so check that article to see how you can update your systems is you're still using the Linux 4.4 LTS kernel. But if you managed to upgrade to Ubuntu 16.04.2 LTS, which uses Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak)'s Linux 4.8 kernel, then you need to read the following.

  • Another Linux Kernel Vulnerability Leading To Local Root From Unprivileged Processes

Canonical Releases New Kernel Update for Ubuntu 16.04 to Fix 7 Vulnerabilities

Filed under
Security
Ubuntu

Canonical published today, February 22, 2017, multiple security advisories to inform Ubuntu users about the availability of new kernel updates for their Linux-based operating systems.

Read more

Security Leftovers

Filed under
Security
  • Java and Python FTP attacks can punch holes through firewalls

    The Java and Python runtimes fail to properly validate FTP URLs, which can potentially allow attackers to punch holes through firewalls to access local networks.

    On Saturday, security researcher Alexander Klink disclosed an interesting attack where exploiting an XXE (XML External Entity) vulnerability in a Java application can be used to send emails.

  • Microsoft: no plans to patch known bugs before March [Ed: Microsoft is keeping open 'back doors' that are publicly known about, not just secret ones]

    Microsoft has no plans to issue updates for two vulnerabilities, one a zero-day and the other being one publicised by Google, before the scheduled date for its next round of updates rolls around in March.

    The company did not issue any updates in February, even though it had been scheduled to switch to a new system from this month onwards.

    It gave no reason for this, apart from saying: "This month, we discovered a last minute issue that could impact some customers and was not resolved in time for our planned updates today.

    "After considering all options, we made the decision to delay this month’s updates. We apologise for any inconvenience caused by this change to the existing plan."

    The Google-disclosed bug was made public last week, and is said to be a flaw in the Windows graphic device interface library that can be exploited both locally and remotely to read the contents of a user's memory.

  • Microsoft issues critical security patches, but leaves zero-day flaws at risk

    Microsoft has patched "critical" security vulnerabilities in its browsers, but has left at least two zero-day flaws with public exploit code.

    The software giant released numerous patches late on Tuesday to fix flaws in Adobe Flash for customers using Internet Explorer on Windows 8.1 and later, as well as Edge for Windows 10.

What’s the best Linux firewall distro of 2017?

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GNU
Linux
Security

You don’t have to manage a large corporate network to use a dedicated firewall. While your Linux distro will have an impressive firewall – and an equally impressive arsenal of tools to manage it – the advantages don’t extend to the other devices on your network. A typical network has more devices connected to the internet than the total number of computers and laptops in your SOHO. With the onslaught of IoT, it won’t be long before your router doles out IP addresses to your washing machine and microwave as well.

The one thing you wouldn’t want in this Jetsonian future is having to rely on your router’s limited firewall capabilities to shield your house – and everyone in it – from the malicious bits and bytes floating about on the internet.

A dedicated firewall stands between the internet and internal network, sanitising the traffic flowing into the latter. Setting one up is an involved process both in terms of assembling the hardware and configuring the software. However, there are quite a few distros that help you set up a dedicated firewall with ease, and we’re going to look at the ones that have the best protective open source software and roll them into a convenient and easy to use package.

Read more

More Security News

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Security

Security News

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Security
  • Security updates for Tuesday
  • Kaspersky: No whiff of Linux in our OS because we need new start to secure IoT [Ed: Kaspersky repeats the same anti-Linux rhetoric he used years ago to market itself, anti-Linux Liam Tung recycles]

    Eugene Kaspersky, CEO of Kaspersky Lab, says its new KasperskyOS for securing industrial IoT devices does not contain "even the slightest smell of Linux", differentiating it from many other IoT products that have the open-source OS at the core.

  • Reproducible Builds: week 95 in Stretch cycle
  • EU privacy watchdogs say Windows 10 settings still raise concerns

    European Union data protection watchdogs said on Monday they were still concerned about the privacy settings of Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system despite the U.S. company announcing changes to the installation process.

    The watchdogs, a group made up of the EU's 28 authorities responsible for enforcing data protection law, wrote to Microsoft last year expressing concerns about the default installation settings of Windows 10 and users' apparent lack of control over the company's processing of their data.

    The group - referred to as the Article 29 Working Party -asked for more explanation of Microsoft's processing of personal data for various purposes, including advertising.

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More in Tux Machines

Licensing: Facebook Responds to Licence Complaints, Cloud Native Open Source License Choices Analysed

  • Facebook relicenses several projects
    Facebook has announced that the React, Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js projects will be moving to the MIT license. This is, of course, a somewhat delayed reaction to the controversy over the "BSD+patent" license previously applied to those projects.
  • Relicensing React, Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js
    Next week, we are going to relicense our open source projects React, Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js under the MIT license. We're relicensing these projects because React is the foundation of a broad ecosystem of open source software for the web, and we don't want to hold back forward progress for nontechnical reasons. This decision comes after several weeks of disappointment and uncertainty for our community. Although we still believe our BSD + Patents license provides some benefits to users of our projects, we acknowledge that we failed to decisively convince this community.
  • Cloud Native Open Source License Choices
    One of the most common questions regarding open source licensing today concerns trajectories. Specifically, what are the current directions of travel both for specific licenses as well as license types more broadly. Or put more simply, what licenses are projects using today, and how is that changing? We’ve examined this data several times, most recently in this January look at the state of licensing based on Black Duck’s dataset. That data suggested major growth for permissive licenses, primarily at the expense of reciprocal alternatives. The Apache and MIT licenses, for example, were up 10% and 21% respectively, while the GPL was down 27%. All of this is on a relative share basis, of course: the “drop” doesn’t reflect relicensing of existing projects, but less usage relative to its peers. [...] One such community with enough of a sample size to be relevant is the one currently forming around the Cloud Native Computing Foundation. Founded in 2015 with the Kubernetes project as its first asset, the Foundation has added eleven more open source projects, all of which are licensed under the same Apache 2 license. But as a successful Foundation is only a part of the broader ecosystem, the real question is what are the licensing preferences of the Cloud Native projects and products outside of the CNCF itself. [...] Unsurprisingly, perhaps, given the influence of the CNCF itself, Apache strongly outperforms all other licenses, showing far greater relative adoption than it has in more generalized datasets such as the Black Duck survey. Overall in this dataset, approximately 64% of projects are covered by the Apache license. No other project has greater than a 12% share. The only other licenses above 10%, in fact, are the GPL at 12% and MIT at 11%. After that, the other projects are all 5% or less.

today's howtos

Games: Half-Life: C.A.G.E.D., Arcan 0.5.3, Wine Staging 2.17

  • Half-Life: C.A.G.E.D. from former Valve worker should hopefully come to Linux
    Half-Life: C.A.G.E.D. [Steam] is a mod from former Valve worker Cayle George, it's a short prison escape and it should be coming to Linux. Mr George actually worked on Team Fortress 2 and Portal 2 during his time at Valve, but he's also worked for other notable developers on titles like Horizon Zero Dawn.
  • Game Engine Powered Arcan Display Server With Durden Desktop Updated
    Arcan, the open-source display server powered by a game engine, is out with a new release. Its Durden desktop environment has also been updated. Arcan is a display server built off "the corpse of a game engine" and also integrates a multimedia framework and offers behavior controls via Lua. Arcan has been in development for a half-decade while its original code traces back more than a decade, as explained previously and has continued advancing since.
  • Arcan 0.5.3, Durden 0.3
    It’s just about time for a new release of Arcan, and way past due for a new release of the reference desktop environment, Durden. Going through some of the visible changes on a ‘one-clip or screenshot per feature’ basis:
  • Razer plans to release a mobile gaming and entertainment device soon
    NVIDIA, another big player in the gaming hardware and lifestyle space, released an Android-based portable gaming and entertainment console called the NVIDIA Shield that emphasized in-home streaming, and the Ouya console that Razer acquired (and discontinued) ran Android. But Razer decided to use Windows instead of Android on the Edge.
  • Wine Staging 2.17 is out with more Direct3D11 features fixing issues in The Witcher 3, Overwatch and more
    Wine Staging 2.17 is another exciting release, which includes more Direct3D11 features which fixes issues with The Witcher 3, Overwatch and more. As a reminder, Wine Staging is the testing area for future Wine development released, which will eventually be made into stable Wine releases.

KDE: Plasma 5.11 in Kubuntu 17.10, Krita 3.3, Randa and Evolution of Plasma Mobile

  • KDE Plasma 5.11 Desktop Will Be Coming to Kubuntu 17.10 Soon After Its Release
    KDE kicked off the development of the KDE Plasma 5.11 desktop environment a few months ago, and they've already published the Beta release, allowing users to get a first glimpse of what's coming in the final release next month. Canonical's Ubuntu Desktop team did a great job bringing the latest GNOME 3.26 desktop environment to the upcoming Ubuntu 17.10 (Artful Aardvark) operating system, and it looks like the Kubuntu team also want to rebase the official flavor on the forthcoming KDE Plasma 5.11 desktop environment.
  • Krita 3.3 Digital Painting App Promises Better HiDPI Support on Linux & Windows
    Work on the next Krita 3.x point release has started, and a first Release Candidate (RC) milestone of the upcoming Krita 3.3 version is now ready for public testing, giving us a glimpse of what's coming in the new release. In the release announcement, Krita devs reveal the fact that they were forced to bump the version number from 3.2.x to 3.3.x because the upcoming Krita 3.3 release will be introducing some important changes for Windows platforms, such as support for the Windows 8 event API, thus supporting the n-trig pen in Surface laptops.
  • Randa-progress post-hoc
    So, back in Randa I was splitting my energies and attentions in many pieces. Some attention went to making pancakes and running the kitchen in the morning — which is stuff I take credit for, but it is really Grace, and Scarlett, and Thomas who did the heavy lifting, and Christian and Mario who make sure the whole thing can happen. And the attendees of the Randa meeting who pitch in for the dishes after lunch and dinner. The Randa meetings are more like a campground than a 5-star hotel, and we work together to make the experience enjoyable. So thanks to everyone who pitched in. Part of a good sprint is keeping the attendees healthy and attentive — otherwise those 16-hour hacking days really get to you, in spite of the fresh Swiss air. [...] You can read more of what the attendees in Randa achieved on planet KDE (e.g. kdenlive, snappy, kmymoney, marble, kube, Plasma mobile, kdepim, and kwin). I’d like to give a special shout out to Manuel, who taught me one gesture in Italian Sign Langauage — which is different from American or Dutch Sign Language, reminding me that there’s localization everywhere.
  • The Evolution of Plasma Mobile
    Back around 2006, when the Plasma project was started by Aaron Seigo and a group of brave hackers (among which, yours truly) we wanted to create a user interface that is future-proof. We didn’t want to create something that would only run on desktop devices (or laptops), but a code-base that grows with us into whatever the future would bring. Mobile devices were already getting more powerful, but would usually run entirely different software than desktop devices. We wondered why. The Linux kernel served as a wonderful example. Linux runs on a wide range of devices, from super computers to embedded systems, you would set it up for the target system and it would run largely without code changes. Linux architecture is in fact convergent. Could we do something similar at the user interface level?