Following Up "Beware the Microsoft Shell Game!"
What this means is that unless a knowledgeable sysadmin has taken explicit action to prevent it, any 15-year-old who can copy code off the Internet, can use Microsoft's IIS to bypass your firewall, bypass your password system and gain administrator-level access to the machine that hosts your web server. They can inspect, alter or delete files at will, no matter how you have them secured. They can also use root-level access to that machine as a springboard for attacks on other systems inside your firewall.
A writeup on this latest in the apparently unending stream of gaping holes in Microsoft's security is at http://www.eeye.com/html/Research/Advisories/AD20010501.html.
This is about bad as it gets, folks. It's a big, nasty problem even by Microsoft's security-bug-of-the-month standards.
At Craig Mundie's anti-open-source sermonette in New York Thursday, I hope someone will have the temerity to ask him a few simple questions:
1. Should Microsoft's record on security inspire confidence in customers considering entrusting their digital identities to Microsoft's Hailstorm system and their critical business data to .NET?
2. Even the most cursory inspection of sites that specialize in tracking security bugs (such as CERT and BugTraq) suggests that open-source operating systems such as Linux and the BSDs have a far better security record than Microsoft Windows, both in having fewer vulnerabilities and in more rapid deployment of fixes. How does Microsoft propose to close the technology gap and catch up to the quality level of these systems?
3. How can potential operating-system customers with millions (perhaps billions) of dollars riding on the security of their computer systems form a rational estimate of their exposure if they cannot inspect the source code of those systems?
4. If the answer to question 3 is "You can see the source code if you're a big enough company to pay us for the privilege", then why should customers have to pay for the privilege of doing the job Microsoft's own QA teams so frequently bungle?
5. How would you respond to the following statement: "Any engineer or executive who, disregarding best practices, entrusts security-critical functions to closed-source software is committing an actionable breach of their responsibility to their employer?"
Eric Raymond can be contacted at Eric S. Raymond.
Webinar: 8 Signs You’re Beyond Cron
On Demand NOW
Join Linux Journal and Pat Cameron, Director of Automation Technology at HelpSystems, as they discuss the eight primary advantages of moving beyond cron job scheduling. In this webinar, you’ll learn about integrating cron with an enterprise scheduler.View Now!
|Dr Hjkl on the Command Line||May 21, 2015|
|Initializing and Managing Services in Linux: Past, Present and Future||May 20, 2015|
|Goodbye, Pi. Hello, C.H.I.P.||May 18, 2015|
|Using Hiera with Puppet||May 14, 2015|
|Urgent Kernel Patch for Ubuntu||May 12, 2015|
|Gartner Dubs DivvyCloud Cool Cloud Management Vendor||May 12, 2015|
- Initializing and Managing Services in Linux: Past, Present and Future
- Dr Hjkl on the Command Line
- Goodbye, Pi. Hello, C.H.I.P.
- Using Hiera with Puppet
- Gartner Dubs DivvyCloud Cool Cloud Management Vendor
- Mumblehard--Let's End Its Five-Year Reign
- Infinite BusyBox with systemd
- It's Easier to Ask Forgiveness...
- A More Stable Future for Ubuntu
- Urgent Kernel Patch for Ubuntu