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Nasty Security Flaw In OAuth, OpenID 18

jones_supa writes: "A notable security vulnerability has been discovered which impacts both OAuth and OpenID, which are software packages that provide a secure delegated access to websites. Wang Jing, a Ph.D student at the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, discovered that the 'Covert Redirect' flaw can masquerade as a login popup based on an affected site's domain. Covert Redirect is based on a well-known exploit parameter. For example, someone clicking on a malicious phishing link will get a popup window in Facebook, asking them to authorize the app. Instead of using a fake domain name that's similar to trick users, the Covert Redirect flaw uses the real site address for authentication. If a user chooses to authorize the login, personal data will be released to the attacker instead of to the legitimate website. Wang did already warn a handful of tech giants about the vulnerability, but they mostly dodged the issue. In all honesty, it is not trivial to fix, and any effective remedies would negatively impact the user experience. Users who wish to avoid any potential loss of data should be careful about clicking links that immediately ask you to log in to Facebook or Google, and be aware of this redirection attack."

A Truckload of OAuth Issues That Would Make Any Author Quit 86

New submitter DeFender1031 writes "Several months ago, when Eran Hammer ragequit the OAuth project, many people thought he was simply being overly dramatic, given that he gave only vague indications of what went wrong. Since then, and despite that, many companies have been switching to OAuth, citing it as a 'superior form of secure authentication.' But a fresh and objective look at the protocol highlights the significant design flaws in the system and sheds some light on what might have led to its creator's departure."

OAuth 2.0 Standard Editor Quits, Takes Name Off Spec 101

New submitter tramp writes "The Register reports, 'Eran Hammer, who helped create the OAuth 1.0 spec, has been editing the evolving 2.0 spec for the last three years. He resigned from his role in June but only went public with his reasons in a blog post on Thursday. "At the end, I reached the conclusion that OAuth 2.0 is a bad protocol," Hammer writes. "WS-* bad. It is bad enough that I no longer want to be associated with it."' At the end of his post, he says, 'I think the OAuth brand is in decline. This framework will live for a while, and given the lack of alternatives, it will gain widespread adoption. But we are also likely to see major security failures in the next couple of years and the slow but steady devaluation of the brand. It will be another hated protocol you are stuck with.'"

OAuth, OpenID Password Crack Could Affect Millions 304

CWmike writes "Researchers Nate Lawson and Taylor Nelson say they've discovered a basic security flaw that affects dozens of open-source software libraries — including those used by software that implements the OAuth and OpenID standards — that are used to check passwords and user names when people log into websites such as Twitter and Digg. By trying to log in again and again, cycling through characters and measuring the time it takes for the computer to respond, hackers can ultimately figure out the correct passwords. This may all sound very theoretical, but timing attacks can actually succeed in the real world. Three years ago, one was used to hack Microsoft's Xbox 360 gaming system, and people who build smart cards have added timing attack protection for years. The researchers plan to discuss their attacks at the Black Hat conference later this month in Las Vegas."

Be careful when a loop exits to the same place from side and bottom.