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I'm actually posting this manually! Leaving the archives up for search.
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Cool tool - cutter
Came across a cool tool today for Linux firewall admins: cutter. Heard of it? It allows you to "cut" internet connections on a firewall. Something like:
That kills all network connections from 192.268.2.55 using port 3400. A simple tool, but something I could use several times a week. Link - via digg.
On an unrelated note, I hope to transition this feed over to the main site, under a specific article category. I recommend subscribing to the new feed now so you don't miss the switch.
Cell phone tracking
This report seems to be generating a lot of buzz, I'm not sure why. I guess most don't understand the cellular infrastructure enough to know this has been going on for years. Certainly real time tracking is possible, but I'd be more curious to see the log retention policies of the large wireless companies. Since most people leave their cells on 24/7 (thanks to extended batteries), it's quite possible that a company w/ a 6 or 12 month archive could create an amazingly accurate map of your life. I'll have to research the technical aspects of the 3rd generation wireless rollouts happening now (EVDO, EDGE, etc) - but my initial guess would be that these require more towers creating a denser coverage map. This increase certainly generates an even more accurate tracking model.
New site and podcast
Hey all - it's been a while. In case you didn't notice, we redesigned the main site. I'm not sure how this will affect the security blog just yet, I might move the feed over to the new site based on sections - we shall see. But I'll post any changes here. Please check it out. Also - starting a new feature: podcasts. The first episode of Taming Tech deals with content management systems, but security themed episodes are forthcoming. Check it out!
Sony rootkit thoughts
Bruce Schneier nails the Sony rootkit story. I didn't pay much attention to it, because I haven't purchased a CD in close to 2 years (thanks iTunes). But I skimmed the news stories coming out and each time my jaw dropped a little further: 500k machines infected including government boxes, cloaking software, Sony's CEO making silly statements... But the real story, as Bruce Schneier points out - why the hell didn't any Antivirus software (or IDS for that matter), detect this software sooner? We are collectively paying these companies billions of dollars for what?
Thanks Bruce, for shining a light on the overlooked aspect of the Sony story. It's really making me rethink our industry's so called defense mechanisms.
Hackers and Crime
An OK article that reiterates what I have feared for quite some time. We've moved passed the nerdy age of hacking. They're becoming more sophisticated and zeroing in on profit...
Internal database abuse
Scary article from the Post Dispatch on internal database abuse, this time by a police officer.
But I'm not sure I agree with the chief of police's comments:
To suggest that there's no room for improvement in security is silly. Sure - they found out that someone was running inappropriate queries - but how long did it take them? What kind of details were they able to reveal? How could the whole thing have been prevented? Such an attitude cannot be comforting to undercover officers in the field...
This made me smile. Glad to see he's back on his feet.