The data could be extracted by gaining access to the read-only public SNMP community string, which enables outside access to device information. While only vulnerabilities in three brands were disclosed today, a Shodan search turns up potentially hundreds of thousands of devices that are exposing SNMP to the Internet that could be equally vulnerable.
Facebook said it believes STARTTLS support has achieved “critical mass,” and backs that up with data that indicates 76 percent of unique MX (mail exchange) hostnames that receive email from Facebook, such as notifications, support the extension. Facebook said that 58 percent of its notification email messages were successfully encrypted and that certificate validation passed for about half of the encrypted email. The other half were opportunistically encrypted, Facebook said.
Decades-old RSA-based handshakes don’t cut it anymore, according to experts, who are anxious to put a modern protocol in place, one that can fend off an intense commitment from cybercriminals and intelligence agencies to snoop and steal data. The consensus is to support Diffie-Hellman Exchange or Elliptic Curve Diffie-Hellman Exchange, both of which support perfect forward secrecy, which experts are urging developers and standards-bearers to instill as a default encryption technology in new applications and build-outs.
msm1267 writes: Microsoft announced it will release an out-of-band security update today to patch a zero-day vulnerability in Internet Explorer, and that the patch will also be made available for Windows XP machines through Automatic Update. At the same time, researchers said they are now seeing attacks specifically targeting XP users.
Microsoft no longer supports XP as of April 8, and that includes the development and availability of security updates. But the about-face today speaks to the seriousness of the vulnerability, which is being exploited in limited targeted attacks, Microsoft said.
Researchers at FireEye, meanwhile, said multiple attackers are now using the exploit against XP machines, prompting the inclusion of XP systems in the patch.
msm1267 writes: DNS service provider UltraDNS dealt with a DDoS attack for most of yesterday. Parent company Neustar announced late yesterday that it had mitigated the attack for most of its customers, but Western U.S. customers were still down. Meanwhile, the SANS Institute received reports from UltraDNS customers that a 100 Gbps DDoS attack was causing latency issues.
msm1267 writes: Apple has fixed a serious security flaw that’s present in many versions of both iOS and OSX and could allow an attacker to intercept data on SSL connections. The bug is one of many that the company fixed Tuesday in its two main operating systems, and several of the other vulnerabilities have serious consequences as well, including the ability to bypass memory protections and run arbitrary code.
The most severe of the vulnerabilities patched in iOS 7.1.1 and OSX Mountain Lion and Mavericks is an issue with the secure transport component of the operating systems. If an attacker was in a man-in-the-middle position on a user’s network, he might be able to intercept supposedly secure traffic or change the connection’s properties.
msm1267 writes: The Tor Project has published a list of 380 exit relays vulnerable to the Heartbleed OpenSSL vulnerability that it will reject. This comes on the heels of news that researcher Collin Mulliner of Northeastern University in Boston found more than 1,000 vulnerable to Heartbleed where he was able to retrieve plaintext user traffic.
Mulliner said he used a random list of 5,000 Tor nodes from the Dan.me.uk website for his research; of the 1,045 vulnerable nodes he discovered, he recovered plaintext traffic that included Tor plaintext announcements, but a significant number of nodes leaked user traffic in the clear.
A report on the first phase of the audit was released today by iSEC Partners, which was contracted by the Open Crypto Audit Project (OCAP), a grassroots effort that not only conducted a successful fundraising effort to initiate the audit, but raised important questions about the integrity of the software.
The first phase of the audit focused on the TrueCrypt bootloader and Windows kernel driver; architecture and code reviews were performed, as well as penetration tests including fuzzing interfaces, said Kenneth White, senior security engineer at Social & Scientific Systems. The second phase of the audit will look at whether the various encryption cipher suites, random number generators and critical key algorithms have been implemented correctly.
msm1267 writes: The first deep look into the security of the Android patch installation process, specifically its Package Management Service (PMS), has revealed a weakness that puts potentially every Android device at risk for privilege escalation attacks.
Researchers from Indiana University and Microsoft published a paper that describes a new set of Android vulnerabilities they call Pileup flaws, and also introduces a new scanner called SecUP that detects malicious apps already on a device lying in wait for elevated privileges. The vulnerability occurs in the way PMS handles updates to the myriad flavors of Android in circulation today. The researchers say PMS improperly vets apps on lower versions of Android that request OS or app privileges that may not exist on the older Android version, but are granted automatically once the system is updated.
The researchers said they found a half-dozen different Pileup flaws within Android’s Package Management Service, and confirmed those vulnerabilities are present in all Android Open Source Project versions and more than 3,500 customized versions of Android developed by handset makers and carriers; more than one billion Android devices are likely impacted, they said.
msm1267 writes: Advanced attackers who target BIOS and firmware with bootkits and other malware have a decided edge on security research and defense in this discipline. These attacks are dangerous because they enable persistence on a PC or server that is difficult to repair without bricking a machine. Researchers at MITRE and chip companies, however, are trying to reverse that trend with research into vulnerabilities in hardware and firmware as well as developing tools that help analyze problems present in BIOS.
msm1267 writes: A presenter at this week’s CanSecWest security conference has withdrawn his scheduled talk for fear the information could be used to attack critical infrastructure worldwide. Eric Filiol, scientific director of the Operational Cryptology and Virology lab. CTO/CSO of the ESIEA in France, pulled his talk on Sunday, informing organizer Dragos Ruiu via email. Filiol, a 22-year military veteran with a background in intelligence and computer security, said he has been studying the reality of cyberwar for four months and came to the decision after discussions with his superiors in the French government. Filiol said he submitted the presentation, entitled “Hacking 9/11: The next is likely to be even bigger with an ounce of cyber,” to CanSecWest three months ago before his research was complete. Since his lab is under supervision of the French government, he was required to review his findings with authorities. “They told me that this presentation was unsuitable for being public,” Filiol said in an email. “It would be considered as an [incentive] to terrorism and would give precise ideas to terrorists on the know-how (the methodology) and the details regarding the USA (but also how to find weaknesses in other countries).”
msm1267 writes: Researchers have built new attack techniques against HTTPS traffic that have been effective in learning details on users' surfing habits, leaking sensitive data that could impact privacy. They tested against 600 leading healthcare, finance, legal services and streaming video sites, including Netflix. Their attack, they said in a research paper, reduced errors from previous methodologies more than 3 ½ times. They also demonstrate a defense against this attack that reduces the accuracy of attacks by 27 percent by increasing the effectiveness of packet level defenses in HTTPS, the paper said.
“We design our attack to distinguish minor variations in HTTPS traffic from significant variations which indicate distinct traffic contents,” the paper said. “Minor traffic variations may be caused by caching, dynamically generated content, or user-specific content including cookies. Our attack applies clustering techniques to identify patterns in traffic.”
msm1267 writes: The similarities between the GnuTLS bug and Apple’s goto fail bug begin and end at their respective failure to verify TLS and SSL certificates. Otherwise, they’re neither siblings, nor distant cousins. The GnuTLS bug is very different, though like Apple’s infamous goto fail error, it will also treat bogus digital certificates as valid. “This one was more of a dumb coding mistake, whereas Apple could have been a cut-and-paste error. It looks like [GnuTLS] failed to cast a return variable correctly. C is hard," said cryptographer Matthew Green of Johns Hopkins University. While the goto command appears in the buggy code in both vulnerabilities, the GnuTLS bug veers off in a different direction. Goto fail, for example is a standard C paradigm for error handling. Goto, in this case, is being used correctly, said Melissa Elliott, a security researcher with Veracode. The problem, she said, is related to variable typing and an improper mixing of error codes that led to this mess.
msm1267 writes: Exploits bypassing Microsoft’s Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit, or EMET, are quickly becoming a parlor game for security researchers. With increasing frequency, white hats are poking holes in EMET, and to its credit, Microsoft has been quick to not only address those issues but challenge and reward researchers who successfully submit bypasses to its bounty program.
The tide may be turning, however, if the latest Internet Explorer zero day is any indication. An exploit used as part of the Operation SnowMan espionage campaign against U.S. military targets contained a feature that checked whether an EMET library was running on the compromised host, and if so, the attack would not execute.
That’s not the same as an in-the-wild exploit for EMET, but that may not be too far down the road, especially when you take into consideration two important factors: Microsoft continues to market EMET as an effective and temporary zero-day mitigation until a patch is released; and the impending end-of-life of Windows XP in three days could spark a surge in EMET installations as a stopgap.
msm1267 writes: Researchers at Bromium Labs are expected to announce today they have developed an exploit that bypasses all of the mitigations in Microsoft’s Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET). Principal security researcher Jared DeMott is scheduled to deliver a presentation this morning at the Security BSides conference explaining how the company’s researchers were able to bypass all of the memory protections offered within the free Windows toolkit.
The work is significant given that Microsoft has been quick to urge customers to install and run EMET as a temporary mitigation against zero-day exploits targeting memory vulnerabilities in Windows or Internet Explorer.
The exploit bypasses all of EMET’s mitigations, unlike previous bypasses that were able to beat only certain aspects of the tool. Researchers took a real-world IE exploit and tweaked it until they had a complete bypass of EMET's ROP, heap spray, SEHOP, ASLR and DEP mitigations.