Tag: open source

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The Heartbleed OpenSSL Flaw: What You Need To Know

There’s a serious vulnerability in most versions of the OpenSSL technology that requires an immediate update to avoid exposing sensitive information and Internet traffic to snooping. In response, the SANS Internet Storm Center (ISC) has raised its InfoCon (threat) level to “Yellow,” indicating that…well…the Internet’s not as safe a place today as it was yesterday, before the vulnerability was released. Here’s what we know right now: + Researcher Neel Mehta of Google Security discovered the vulnerability, which was apparently introduced with a OpenSSL update in December, 2011, but only fixed with the release of OpenSSL 1.0.1g on Monday. + Dubbed “heartbleed” (thank the Codenomicon marketing department for that one), the vulnerability (CVE-2014-0160) is described as a TLS heartbeat read overrun. TLS stands for Transport Layer Security. According to OpenSSL.org, vulnerable versions of the OpenSSL software have version numbers ranging from 1.0.1 and 1.0.2-beta. + Codenomicon described the vulnerability as an “implementation problem” […]

Open Source IoT Platform Would Boost Security

Interoperability (or the lack of it) stands out as one of the major obstacles to the expansion of the Internet of Things. As we’ve discussed on this blog, the lack of a common platform for Internet-enabled devices to communicate on has resulted in a balkanized IoT landscape. Nest’s smart thermometer and smoke detector communicate and share information famously, but if you want to link them with some smart appliance from GE or LG, you’re out of luck. But that may soon be changing. On Tuesday, The Linux Foundation announced a new, cross industry consortium of major IT infrastructure makers, software vendors and electronics firms. The AllSeen Alliance is tasked with developing a common, open source platform that allows hardware and software firms to unite their creations, regardless of their brand – and provide basic security features, to boot. The Alliance counts electronics giants like Panasonic, Qualcomm, LG and Sharp as […]

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Google Will Use Cash To Clean Up Open Source

The widespread use of vulnerable or buggy third party code is serious problem facing public and private sector organizations, alike. Just this week, for example, The Wall Street Journal reported that an independent audit of Healthcare.gov, the star-crossed Federal Government website that is the primary health exchange in more than 30 states, is choking on poorly integrated or extraneous code that “served no purpose they could identify.” But what happens when the third-party code in question is open source code? Things get more complex. For one thing: open source is the salt and pepper of the software world: a common ingredient in applications of all sorts. And, as security researchers have noted: many of the so-called “smart devices” that are populating the physical world run variants of Linux, the open source operating system. But because those source code repositories are managed cooperatively and collectively by volunteers, security often takes a […]

New Search Engine Wants To Be A Google For Code

Researchers at The University of Cambridge in the UK have created a Google-like search engine that can peer inside applications, analyzing their underlying code. The search tool, named “Rendezvous,” has applications for a number of problems. It could be used to help reverse engineer potentially malicious files, copyright enforcement or to find evidence of plagiarism within applications, according to a blog post by Ross Anderson, a Professor of Security Engineering at the Laboratory.   Rendezvous was unveiled in a seminar on Tuesday by Wei Ming Khoo, a doctoral student in the Security Group working at the University of Cambridge’s Computer Laboratory. The engine, which can be accessed here, allows users to submit an unknown binary, which is decompiled, parsed and compared against a library of code harvested from open source projects across the Internet. Code reuse has become a pressing security issue. The application security firm Veracode has named reused […]