« Archives in November, 2010

Wikileaks release of embassy cables reveals US concerns

I haven’t really posted anything about the Wikileaks controversy but it appears that they continue to release documents despite the turmoil brewing within the organization.

Whistle-blowing website Wikileaks has begun releasing extracts from secret cables sent by US embassies, giving an insight into current global concerns. They include reports of some Arab leaders – including Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah – urging the US to attack Iran and end its nuclear weapons program.

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Windows 0day allows malicious code execution

Antimalware provider Prevx has sounded the alarm about a serious vulnerability in fully patched versions of Microsoft Windows. It allows attackers to execute malware, even in versions designed to withstand such exploits.

Technical details have already been published on a Chinese forum, leading to speculation that it won’t be long before attackers exploit it in the wild.

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Homeland Security Seizes Dozens of Piracy Websites

The US Government is taking piracy serious.

Over the past week, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement unit of the Department of Homeland Security seized more than 70 websites in a new crackdown on internet piracy.

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China telecom operator denies hijacking Internet traffic

I definitely saw this coming.

China’s largest fixed-line phone carrier denied it hijacked worldwide Internet traffic in April following a U.S. government report, that was released yesterday, that said the company had redirected network routes through Chinese servers.

China Telecom rejected the claims in an e-mail statement, but offered no further comment.

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Katana: Portable Multi-Boot Security Suite (Version 2.0 released!)

“Katana is a portable multi-boot security suite which brings together many of today’s best security distributions and portable applications to run off a single Flash Drive. It includes distributions which focus on Pen-Testing, Auditing, Forensics, System Recovery, Network Analysis, and Malware Removal. Katana also comes with over 100 portable Windows applications; such as Wireshark, Metasploit, NMAP, Cain & Abel, and many more.”

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More on China: 2010 Annual Report to Congress

In addition to the post about 15 percent of Internet traffic being routed through China, the final 2010 Annual Report to Congress was released today. Of particular interest is section 2 titled “External Implications of China’s Internet-related Activities.”

Get the full report.

Encryption Adoption Rises, Mainly Thanks To Compliance

Most U.S. organizations are currently encrypting data or are in the process of doing so, and the No. 1 driver for this is compliance.

A new study by the Ponemon Institute, commissioned by Symantec, found that 84 percent of nearly 1,000 U.S. organizations surveyed are using encryption or starting to, an increase of 2 percent from 2009 and 5 percent from 2008. Overall, most organizations have deployed file-server encryption (62 percent), full-disk encryption (59 percent), and database encryption (57 percent). Full-disk encryption was up 5 percent over last year and 15 percent since 2007.

Full-disk encryption in these circumstances is overkill and stinks of compliance only. Full-disk encryption is meant to protect from theft but encrypting file-servers is useless. If you are protecting your drives from the nightly custodian pulling them out of the servers and disk farms then knock yourself out.

Compliance != Security

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Internet Traffic from U.S. Government Websites Was Redirected Via Chinese Networks

Nearly 15 percent of the world’s Internet traffic — including data from the Pentagon, the office of Defense Secretary Robert Gates and other U.S. government websites — was briefly redirected through computer networks in China last April, according to a congressional commission report obtained by FoxNews.com.

What’s amazing is this happened last April and no one knew about it.

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World's most advanced rootkit penetrates 64-bit Windows

A notorious rootkit that for years has ravaged 32-bit versions of Windows has begun claiming 64-bit versions of the Microsoft operating system as well.

The ability of TDL, aka Alureon, to infect 64-bit versions of Windows 7 is something of a coup for its creators, because Microsoft endowed the OS with enhanced security safeguards that were intended to block such attacks. The rootkit crossed into the 64-bit realm sometime in August, according to security firm Prevx.

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Apache Software Foundation vs. Oracle

I don’t mean to bash Oracle. OK, yes I do.

Oracle appears to be dead set on pushing out any community participation in any of their open source projects (remember, they only have them because they were inherited in the acquisition of SUN Microsystems). Oracle has shown aggressive behavior by dropping OpenSolaris, pushing out members of the OpenOffice Community Council, and dropping the InnoDB engine out of the free MySQL product and raising the price on the supported product (just hope it’s not going to cost what the rest of their product solutions cost). The Apache Software Foundation is now raising Oracle’s violations as members of the JCP (Java Community Process) Executive Committee, for which the Apache Software Foundation (ASF) had been re-elected by a whopping support of 95% of the votes.

Oracle’s behavior towards the Open Source community cannot be seen as anything less that aggressive any longer.

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