Authentication - establishing the authenticity of a person or other entity. Not to be confused with authorization - defining access rights to resources.

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How should passwords be stored if they must be recoverable?

By "encrypting" passwords you are violating CWE-257: Storing Passwords in a Recoverable Format. But this is exactly what the French government wants. They want to be able to obtain the passwords of ...
16
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2answers
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How does ssh public key authentication work?

My basic understanding is this: The (connected to) server's sshd uses the public key to encrypt some message The client's ssh or ssh-agent decrypts it and sends something back (the message's ...
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4answers
1k views

Does two-factor authentication reduce the need for a long password?

I've recently enabled 2-factor auth on a number of web apps, mostly using Google Authenticator. Does this mean that the importance of a strong password on each site is reduced? I would prefer to use ...
16
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4answers
363 views

Are malicious relying parties able to abuse OpenID logins?

if I logon with OpenID into a website (crafted by attackers/hackers) I want to know how much damage can they do to me? Are they able to steal my contact info, name, etc (assuming I'm using Gmail ...
16
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8k views

Why is client-side hashing of a password so uncommon?

There are very few websites that hash the users password before submitting it to the server. Javascript doesnt even have support for SHA or other algorithms. But I can think of quite a few advantages, ...
16
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4answers
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SSH key auth, but still need password for sudo?

SSH with public-private key authentication comes enabled by default with most Linux distributions. This is great because when I create accounts for remote users I don't have to email them sensitive ...
16
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5answers
1k views

NFC contactless payment security

This is really bugging me. Up until recently debit cards with an electronic chip were the most popular electronic form of payment available in Poland (I'd wager that in other European countries as ...
16
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2answers
558 views

Which factors should I consider for devices that accept handwritten digital signatures?

These days many locations ask you to give your signature on a digital signature pad/device. As I am situated in Europe, the EU directive 1999/93/EC seems to regulate it. From what I have found out ...
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6answers
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What's the point of the CA?

So a Certificate Authority certifies that a website corresponds to a given organization. Why is this necessary? When I interact with a business or organization, I do it one of a couple ways: I ...
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Password and Generated number - How does it work?

In my company, they don't allow accessing the company email or servers from outside the company network. To access the email from outside the network, you have to use: Username, password and a number ...
15
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5answers
1k views

Does two factor authentication prevent social engineering attacks

After reading this article from symantec I got to think how much all these social engineering techniques rely on the authentication system of users, a password. Considering three different additional ...
15
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20k views

Creating user specific authentication methods in SSH

I have configured sshd on an Ubuntu server to use key authentication and it is working fine. I had to disable password authentication for key authentication to work. Server is always accessed via ...
15
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3answers
940 views

What can I do if my bank thinks my date of birth is “known only to me”?

My bank has recently replaced passwords with occasionally asking me information that is "known only to me". Such information includes my date of birth, postcode, and my mother’s maiden name. ...
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3answers
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Is HTTPS and Basic Authentication secure enough for banking webservices (RESTful)?

I have been reading about SSL/TLS for the last few days and looks like it has never been practically cracked. Given SSL/TLS is used for all communications between client application and the server, ...
15
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2answers
5k views

Secure communication between applications using SSL Certificates

I am looking for a way how to secure communication between our applications. There is a "server" application listening on some TCP port and "client" application which is communicating with the ...
15
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3answers
629 views

Does signing out of a website ensure no-one can cookie hack?

If I click the signout link of a website, does this mean it is not possible for someone to hijack my cookie and sign in with it? While I'm logged in, is it possible for someone who has access to my ...
15
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5answers
2k views

Is there any reason to show the same message for invalid username as password?

I've seen a security question/requirement that a website login return the same error message for invalid password as for non-existent user. The idea being that this it makes it impossible to discover ...
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6answers
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How to implement multi factor authentication using a token generator?

I'd like to implement multi factor authentication on a few projects. Now the first factor would be username and password, for the second factor I would like to use a token generator. These tokens ...
15
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4answers
588 views

Why aren't digital signatures the standard way to authenticate web clients?

The web is a mess of incompatible cookie schemes, asinine requirements ("your password must contain letters, numbers, and at least one symbol from !()-_., and must begin with a letter, and once you ...
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4answers
5k views

Three-Factor Authentication for Windows

This HowToGeek article... http://www.howtogeek.com/67556/how-to-unlock-your-pc-by-being-nearby-with-a-bluetooth-phone/ ...got me thinking. Is there any software (or combination of software) that ...
15
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2answers
4k views

Encryption strategies for multi users access in production systems

I am pretty unknown to encryption strategies in production environments. So my concern is to find a solution how to strongly encrypt data, but make it available to multiple users with different keys. ...
14
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6answers
2k views

Is this login security enough?

I'm coming up with my next login system for admins of an e-commerce website, which will have this: login form is SSL secured password is converted to SHA-256 before being transmitted (bcrypt is too ...
14
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3answers
7k views

Is the Facebook login form using SSL without https in the URL?

If I go to http://facebook.com, I am not redirected to https://www.facebook.com. If it doesn't have https in the URL, can the login be secure? Usually I am redirected to an https page on other sites? ...
14
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3answers
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Are combined sign in / up pages dangerous, and how to improve them?

I'd like to code a combined sign in/up page like the one in the picture below. My colleague said this will allow spammers/hackers to see what email addresses are registered with our system and ...
14
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6answers
2k views

Additional security benefits from Multi-Factor Authentication?

Does multi-factor authentication provide any additional security benefits on top of doing a better job at correctly identifying and authenticating users compared to single factor authentication? In ...
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4answers
768 views

Entering passwords at public computers

Sometimes it happens that I have to access my email or some other web service from public machines. Are there any options to make it secure or at least reduce risks to acceptable levels? I am most ...
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1answer
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Why use an authentication token instead of the username/password per request?

The author of http://stackoverflow.com/a/477578/14731 recommends: DO NOT STORE THE PERSISTENT LOGIN COOKIE (TOKEN) IN YOUR DATABASE, ONLY A HASH OF IT! [...] use strong salted hashing (bcrypt / ...
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Safe way to authenticate (multi-factor authentication?) while being monitored?

(I'm trying for a bit more precise answer, particularly with regard to multi-factor authentication, than I received for "Safe way to use a computer that has spyware/keylogger installed?" on SU.) ...
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2answers
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What are the most common password salting methods?

I learned that the Sun guys used the login name as salt for password hashing. Is this a common approach? What are the most common salt values?
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5answers
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Is there a digital “safety deposit box” equivalent?

Digital safety deposit boxes: do they exist? if yes, are (any|they) trustworthy? There are many bricks and mortar financial institutions where one can rent a locked box in a locked room and be ...
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4answers
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How to protect against login CSRF?

http://seclab.stanford.edu/websec/csrf/csrf.pdf points out that most CSRF protection mechanisms fail to protect login forms. As http://stackoverflow.com/a/15350123/14731 explains: The ...
14
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6answers
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Securing an API for mobile access

I've built a nice REST/JSON API that is used by other companies (our clients) as a B2B service. Each of our clients has a username/password pair, and we also do HTTPS and validate the source IP of ...
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2answers
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Hiding user account names from unauthenticated RDP sessions

This is for a Windows 7 Ultimate system, which is not a member of a domain. When I log into the system locally, I am required to either manually enter my user ID or authenticate with biometrics. The ...
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3answers
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Should security question answers be case-sensitive?

Question In the case of security questions being used to reset an account password, what is considered best practice for handling case-sensitivity on the security question answers? Scenario An ...
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How do NFC tags prevent copying?

Ten years ago, we opened our building's front door with a badge. Five years ago we paid public transports with an RFID card. Today we pay for our bread with the same system and tomorrow we would ...
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3answers
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How does deauthing work in aireplay-ng?

I have a question of how aireplay-ng works when it deauths. I mean, it is really easy to disconnect another client from an AP: you just need to run the deauth command (in aireplay-ng) once, specifying ...
14
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1answer
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When authenticating ciphertexts, what should be HMACed?

Some have argued for using AES-256-CTR with HMAC-SHA-256 for authenticated encryption over AEAD-specific modes like EAX and GCM. However, when doing, this, what should be HMAC'd? And how? ...
14
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1answer
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Ways to sign gpg public key so it is trusted?

I have a service through SSL which gives the user a code for a specific reason. I want to sign the code with the web server's private key (gpg --clearsign) and send the signed code along so that they ...
14
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2answers
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How does Windows 8's Microsoft Account authentication work?

One of the new features to Windows 8 is the ability to log in to your PC using your credentials from a Microsoft Account. How is this implemented, and what steps are taken to prevent hijacking of ...
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3answers
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Is it possible to use a GPG or SSH key for web based authentication in a secure fashion?

Let's say hypothetically I am writing a web application targeting technically inclined, security-conscious users who have no problems generating and using GPG or SSH keys. Is it possible to use said ...
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3answers
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Compromised JSON Web Token (JWT) Bearer Token

We are implementing a REST service that requires authentication and authorization. Because of the stateless nature of REST API's, we want to use JWT to make authenticated calls to the API through a ...
13
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6answers
3k views

Is it a security issue to allow nearly identical email addresses when registering?

Say you have a website where it is possible to create accounts for all of the following email addresses: 'test@test.com' 'test@test.com ' 'test@test.com;' 'test@test.com;test2@test.com' Should this ...
13
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9answers
847 views

Anybody have additional information on the EMC RSA SecurID compromise?

The Security Advisory Press Release here doesn't have much information, the email that alerted me to this didn't help much more, and unfortunately I heard about the two Thursday evening conference ...
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2answers
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Is this a secure data exchange scheme for a game?

I am writing a multiplayer game. I have a central server which processes everything. For data exchange I use HTTPS protocol. Because this is a game I cannot use computationally expensive systems like ...
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3answers
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Choosing a session ID algorithm for a client-server relationship

I am developing an application which has a client-server relationship, and I am having trouble deciding on the algorithm by which the session identifier is determined. My goal is to restrict ...
13
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6answers
14k views

Difference between authentication and identification [Crypto and Security perspective]

I am always confused by the way the word authentication is used in security literature (i.e., outside the crypto realm). Most of the time I understand that they are actually implying identification. ...
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2answers
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What is the benefit of the scope in OAuth2?

In the question, substitute scope with state. Since there is an answer based on the wrong question, I'll let everything below as is. The answer is useful nonetheless. This question refers to ...
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BCrypt's 72-character limit and using it as a general digest algorithm

Goal: have token/cookie-based authentication that doesn't require keeping sessions on the server TL;DR: What, if any, is the accepted mechanism to work around the 72-character limitation of BCrypt? ...
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I need ideas for blocking a single malevolent user

Let me throw out this problem I'm having to some of my technical peeps and see if you guys have any new suggestions: We have a website that sends text messages and voice mails for our clients. ...
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Why should one avoid chains of SSH sessions?

In this document on Security on NSC computing resources, there are several obvious pieces of advice (use a strong password, don't repeat passwords, etc.). One piece of advice I have not seen before, ...