17 posts categorized "security"


Another Potential CA Breach?

I first saw it mentioned on twitter this morning and now my requests to them are timing out but it looks as if StartCom Ltd. *may* have suffered a security breach.  The following message was on their site when I connected a short while ago:


Due to a security breach that occurred at the 15th of June, issuance of digital certificates and related services has been suspended. Our services will remain offline until further notice.

Subscribers and holders of valid certificates are not affected in any form.

Visitors to web sites and other parties relying on valid certificates are not affected.

We apologize for the temporary inconvenience and thank you for your understanding.

I'm a little unclear about it still so hopefully we'll have more information soon. The strange thing is that I was only seeing the maintenance page in Safari (and not in Firefox) and a buddy of mine wasn't seeing it at all.

More to be posted if I learn more.

*Update* - I'm seeing the maintenance page consistently but only with a browser.  cURL doesn't display the maintenance text yet.

**Update** - I don't know how credible this one is.  Nothing's being reported about it. Google's cache displayed the following message recently for the site (from June 16th):

***Update*** - Well, it seems legitimate.  Here's the Internet Storm Center post noting the breach.  Here's a Register article discussing it, too, which provides a little bit of additional information.  My main concern with StartCom right now is that depending upon the value of the "ap" cookie that they're dropping when connecting to www.startssl.com, you either see a page mentioning the breach or you see their usual homepage.   

****Update**** - More information from H-Online 


Verifying 'WebDAV HTTP Method PROPFIND Enabled' Remediation was Successful

If you work in a fairly large organization or manage a large number of heterogeneous servers like I do, there is a very good chance you're going to have some IIS 5.0 sites hanging around. If you've been involved in PCI remediation activities, chances are also very good that you've been tagged with the "WebDAV HTTP Method PROPFIND Enabled" vulnerability.

WebDAV HTTP Method PROPFIND Enabled is an information disclosure issue. A malformed request will result in the internal IP address (and port) of your web server being displayed, which is something the Information Security & Compliance folks get antsy over. The 'malformed' request required to prove the existence of the vulnerability isn't all that sophisticated—it is simply an HTTP PROPFIND request to the root of the web site with an empty Host request header and a content length set to 0. Send that along to your vulnerable IIS 5.x web site and you've got yourself an internal IP address (and port if not bound to a well-known port).

Mitigation is pretty easy but, as is all too often the case, a bit draconian. Disable WebDAV entirely. The Microsoft KB Article: How to disable WebDAV for IIS 5.x contains all the information you need to disable WebDAV on IIS 5, so I won't go into details on how to do it in this post. However, you might be interested in seeing the issue for yourself and verifying that it is not a false positive or maybe your company's change management procedures require you to verify your change was successful. If so, the script below may help (or grab it off the downloads page).

Execute with the host and port arguments. If server is vulnerable, it will display an HTTP 207 status code along with the internal IP Address found. This is still version 0.1—it works but I could be making modifications to it again in the future. This version has been tested on Perl 5.10 and is dependent on LWP::UserAgent and XML::LibXML.

UPDATE:  (July 27, 2011) - Version 0.1.1 released, which sets a port number on all requests so you can run this script successfully against ports other than well-known ports.

#!/usr/bin/env perl

use strict;
use warnings;
use feature ':5.10';

use LWP::UserAgent;
use HTTP::Headers;
use XML::LibXML;
use HTTP::Request;
use HTTP::Response;

my $host = $ARGV[0];
my $port = $ARGV[1];
my $scheme;

my $help = "Usage:  $0 <hostname> <port>";

if ( !@ARGV ) {
    print $help . "\n";
    exit 0;

if ( $port == 443 ) {
    $scheme = 'https';
else {
    $scheme = 'http';

my $message;

# Will set content-length to zero
my $content_length = 0;
# Will set an empty Host header
my $host_header = "";

my $objHeader = HTTP::Headers->new;
  $objHeader->header('Host' => $host_header);
  $objHeader->header('Content_Length' => $content_length);

my $url = "$scheme://$host:$port/";

    my $method = "PROPFIND";
    my $ua  = LWP::UserAgent->new;
    my $request = HTTP::Request->new( "PROPFIND", $url, $objHeader, $message );

    my $response = $ua->request($request);

    given ($response->code ) {
        when (207) {
            my $parser = XML::LibXML->new();
            my $doc = $parser->load_xml( string => $response->content );
            say "Response Status Code: " . $response->status_line;
            say "Internal Web Server Address: " . $doc->findvalue('//a:href') . "\nSite Appears to be Vulnerable to WebDAV HTTP Method PROPFIND Enabled\n  information disclosure issue.";
        when (301) {
            say "Redirect Present.  Potential False Positive";
            say "Retry request against: " . $response->header('Location');
        when (302) {
            say "Redirect Present.  Potential False Positive";
            say "Retry request against: " . $response->header('Location');
        when (307) {
            say "Redirect Present.  Potential False Positive";
            say "Retry request against: " . $response->header('Location');
        when (403) {
            say $response->status_line;
            say "This is not an expected response code."
        when (404) {
            say $response->status_line;
            say "This is not an expected response code."
        when (405) {
            say $response->status_line;
            say "HTTP Method PROPFIND is not permitted.";
            say "This is good!";
        when (501) {
            say $response->status_line;
            say "HTTP Method PROPFIND is not implemented.";
            say "This is good!";
        default {
            say $response->status_line;


Links - Threats to Cloud Computing

Today, I stumbled across a few links to various articles talking about the latest batch of threats to cloud computing, which I thought others might find interesting as well.  The first post is from the privatecloud site, which appears to be sponsored by EMC, Cisco, and VMWare titled: 5 Overlooked Threats to Cloud Computing.  It is a repost from a DataMation article that appeared the same day, which is much more ad-friendly!  ( Please note that storage, networking, and virtualization are not noted as threats. :)

Over at the CCSK Guide, "Top Threats to Cloud Computing" summarizes a recently published pdf whitepaper with the same title from the Cloud Security Alliance.  The blog posts summarizes, the whitepaper goes a little more in-depth.