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Feds Say NSA "Bogeyman" Did Not Find Silk Road's Servers

blueg3 Re:Too bad we can't trust them (142 comments)

Inbound with Tor is not so bad, but it requires a two-machine setup that's nontrivial for a non-sysadmin to do correctly. Getting the server's outbound (new connections, not return traffic) to transit over Tor exclusively is less easy. Ideally, you don't make outbound connections from your server.

You know Silk Road actually used reCAPTCHA, yes?

about a week ago
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Feds Say NSA "Bogeyman" Did Not Find Silk Road's Servers

blueg3 Re:Too bad we can't trust them (142 comments)

You hit login 100 times

That's a coy way of saying they were trying to do SQL injection and it didn't work.

and it spits out the IP address for no reason.

In the course of trying to do SQLi, they generated a ton of different error message. The HTML source of one of the error message contained the server's real IP address. Pretty easy mistake to make if you unwisely put your hidden-service Web server and your Tor proxy on the same physical machine (thereby running your Web server on a device that has a public IP address).

Such a configuration might be necessary if, for example, your website integrates a third-party system (like a captcha) and that third party happens to block Tor traffic.

about a week ago
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Feds Say NSA "Bogeyman" Did Not Find Silk Road's Servers

blueg3 Re:Server doesn't have client's real IP address (142 comments)

They're saying the server leaked its own IP address. Unless you've set up your system so that your Tor hidden server is on a computer not connected directly to the Internet and it connects to a physically-separate Tor node that blocks any network flows other than ones going over the Tor proxy, then any Tor hidden server also has a leakable IP address. A Web server error message (or embedded error message from a third-party service, for example), header, or other piece of data might then contain the server's IP address.

That's pretty thin information by itself. But if any part of your server is configured to listen on all network interfaces (instead of, say, localhost), then someone making an HTTP request to that IP address gets a page from your server. That's fairly damning evidence.

about a week ago
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U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

blueg3 Re:Can we stop using the word 'TAPE' (643 comments)

Yes, wireless network security, network service security, and wireless data coverage are all solid enough that this is a great idea and definitely could not be easily hacked.

about three weeks ago
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Planes Can Be Hacked Via Inflight Wi-fi, Says Researcher

blueg3 Re:I don't buy it (151 comments)

Hardcoded credentials aren't necessary. What they *mean* is that the *reason* for hardcoded credentials is "support". "Necessary" here doesn't actually mean "necessary", but rather, "deemed to be the best choice". Of course, it might really be the best choice. There's certainly a cost associated with making the support more complicated. You have to weigh that against the difficulty of using the hardcoded credentials and what you can do with them. There are lots of potential tradeoff points, from "using hardcoded credentials was the stupidest choice you've ever made" to "it's technically offensive, but also the best option".

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:and this is news why? (205 comments)

Doesn't require physical access. Firmware reprogramming is easily over-the-wire with many USB devices. It just requires logical access to the device. A computer running malware is a malicious third party with logical access to the USB device.

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:Oh think of the fun when drivers update firmwar (205 comments)

Yes, devices have updateable firmware. How is this a "sneakernet issue"? The firmware update does not cause Windows to install anything. Those are orthogonal features.

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:Do cellphone chargers require USB negotiation? (205 comments)

Sure. Depending on your device (iPhone works differently from the standard USB fast-charging spec), you should be able to easily look up what resistors need to go where. (As mentioned, non-iPhone devices use an informal standardized spec. A circuit diagram of something like a Samsung charger should show you.)

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:Oh think of the fun when drivers update firmwar (205 comments)

What sneakernet issue? Be more clear. USB devices do not contain installable software, except for the obvious and well-known case of a mass-storage device happening to contain files that can be intentionally or inadvertently executed by the end user after the MSD is connected.

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:Do cellphone chargers require USB negotiation? (205 comments)

You just need a resistor or two. Almost any USB-charged device will charge at 500 mA if it is connected to a dumb charger (no data lines), but in order to charge at a higher current (as many devices do), it needs to sense that it's connected to a charger that supports the higher current draw. So that it can be implemented without real USB-supporting electronics, that's just done with some simple electrical components. So you can make a charger that blocks the data lines but permits full-speed charging.

If you're okay with the slow version, just go out and buy a "power only" USB cable. They already exist. Alternately, this.

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:White hat hackers, if you build it I will come. (205 comments)

It'd probably be easier to implement a little hardware device that places restrictions on device classes that can connect through it and limits hybrid devices (e.g., keyboard+mouse = ok, keyboard+webcam = reject).

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:Oh think of the fun when drivers update firmwar (205 comments)

A couple NSA letters later and MS is now sending NSA payloads.

Because they couldn't already do this with network-distributed software updates?

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:How is this viable as an attack medium? (205 comments)

1. A ton of USB devices are actually implemented as general-purpose components with programmable firmware (attached to whatever support hardware, like a network card or a webcam, is necessary). So they're more common than you think.

2. Smartphones are an excellent reprogrammable USB device that lots of individuals have.

3. This is difficult enough to really engineer well that it is probably a bigger threat as a targeted attack against a big organization for now. Until someone does the engineering to make it easy to deploy widely. Then, it'll be a threat for everyone. Kind of like automated hacking of consumer-grade routers to modify the firmware to participate in an Internet-wide portscan. It's the Metasploit effect: it's not a big problem until someone makes it automated, then it is.

about a month and a half ago
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"BadUSB" Exploit Makes Devices Turn "Evil"

blueg3 Re:and this is news why? (205 comments)

The whole point of this is that the malware reprograms the firmware of existing, trusted devices to make them malicious.

about a month and a half ago
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New SSL Server Rules Go Into Effect Nov. 1

blueg3 Re:Documentation (92 comments)

None. Now you've identified and understand the problem.

about 2 months ago
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New SSL Server Rules Go Into Effect Nov. 1

blueg3 Re: Why? (92 comments)

They are bugged only once, and then they accept the cert locally.

Not necessarily. On Chrome, for example, accepting a self-signed cert long-term isn't the default behavior. Even that isn't a great idea: you have no knowledge of whether the self-signed cert is legitimate or not without a substantial out-of-band communication of technical information to nontechnical people, which isn't cheap. A college network is a good example: it should be treated as a hostile network, so MitM against a self-signed cert within your private network is very much a reality.

Or the college provides an easy way for the BYOD people to acquire the college's cert.

Doing that at a large scale for technically-inclined people costs more than a public CA cert. Once you have to support regular users, it's way more expensive.

There is no need for an official CA to issue a cert for Server1 at IP address 10.2.1.2

Certs don't include IP address. When you get a cert for server1.internal.unm.edu, they don't know what IP address(es) it will be bound to, and they don't and shouldn't care.

No need whatsoever.

There certainly is a need. It's to enable devices that want SSL but aren't configured to trust your internal CA to securely identify your server. There are lots of reasons for "aren't configured to trust your internal CA" to happen.

And, as proof of that, starting in November, the official CAs will stop issuing those types of certs.

They're going to require that certs they issue are for domains that are tied to an external domain. For example, mail.internal.unm,edu. This doesn't negatively impact people's ability to have public CA certs for internal resources. Nor should it.

about 2 months ago
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New York Judge OKs Warrant To Search Entire Gmail Account

blueg3 Re:No limits on storage or security (150 comments)

Judging by how the police actually operate, a hard drive with that data will be put in a box and put into storage with a large collection of other such boxes, probably never to be seen again.

about 2 months ago
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Thousands of Leaked KGB Files Are Now Open To the Public

blueg3 Re:Strictly speaking... (95 comments)

Oddly, it's not. That's where OP is coming from. "Treasure trove" comes ultimately from Latin via French (or at least, some language fragments the Normans brought over). The "trove" means "found", so it's "found treasure". That's why in the original (pre-English) phrase, the word order is backwards: "trove" is the adjective, "treasure" is the noun, and it follows the appropriate French/Latin word order. It was pulled directly into English without reordering (common for borrowed phrases). Eventually, "trove" (which had no English meaning at all) became a synonym (a shortening) for "treasure trove".

So by etymology, "trove" was originally an adjective. However, it means nothing in English. The phrase "treasure trove" is a noun phrase all by itself that can't really be broken into parts.

about 2 months ago
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Thousands of Leaked KGB Files Are Now Open To the Public

blueg3 Re:seems like snowden did the exact same thing. (95 comments)

Well:
* The documents are being revealed to the public now and document events from 30-40 years ago.
* These are documents that he personally worked with, rather than a cache of documents acquired for the purpose of copying and releasing them.
* There's no question, I think, that this guy was a spy and defector. He was moved from Russia to the UK with the help of UK intelligence agencies in exchange for Russian secrets. Nobody's trying to claim that he's a "whistleblower". No comment on his actions or motivations vs. Snowden's, but they are potentially substantially different.
* This guy is dead.

Up to you to decide if any of these are substantive differences and why, but there are distinct differences.

about 2 months ago

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