Securing Linux systems and applications; understanding Linux security features.

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Using TPM for full disc encryption?

E.g.: Can I make a better full disc encryption with e.g.: LUKS using the TPM? How?
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Linux - user can be in forbidden directory if su to it from user with access - is this concerning?

I was in a directory on CentOS as user1 (root in this case) and then did su to user2 which cannot normally get to that directory due to lack of "execute" permission on a parent directory, but as user2 ...
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357 views

Where can I “hide” easter eggs for students learning about Linux security?

I feel like this isn't the best place to ask this (since there's no single right answer), but I can't think of a better place. If you have a better recommendation, could you please recommend it and I ...
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569 views

How a malware executes remote payload

Let's assume a malware was installed (on a UNIX-based platform) with some social engineering tricks. The original installed code itself may be benign, but the only malicious activity is that the ...
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Issues with preserving $HOME on sudo

On Ubuntu, the default behavior with sudo is to preserve the user's $HOME environment variable, which means that sudo will be able to read the dot files in the user's home directory. I enjoy this ...
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1answer
140 views

Is there any security risk allowing regular Linux users to run arbitrary code?

I'd like to allow untrusted users to run arbitrary Node apps. If I use iptables to block everything except trusted servers, make each user's home folder only visible to them, and use runuser to start ...
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310 views

Does the new Fedora package manager allow unauthorized installations?

I just upgraded to Fedora 22. The biggest change from the previous version is that the yum package manager is now replaced with dnf. One change I've noticed is that if you try to execute a command ...
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4k views

Security of LXC compared to OpenVZ

For years, I'm now using OpenVZ on my server, but support discontinued for Debian and Ubuntu, current releases seem to focus on LXC now, which is not a bad idea from the point of comfort. But what ...
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547 views

Testing a chroot environment for privilege escalation vulnerabilities

I'm looking for holes in my current implementation of a chroot jail that I have implemented for a group of users. Is there anything I can do better here? I utilized the following packages: RHEL6 ...
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493 views

Is symlink race a very common vulnerability in UNIX systems

As far as I know, when I am creating a new file or directory in a directory that can be written by multiple users (and thus an adversary can have made a symlink there), the only way to protect myself ...
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458 views

Are encryption keys wiped from RAM before hibernate, or how to do it (Luks and Truecrypt)

Using Linux, I have system and swap/hibernation partitions encrypted with LUKS, and data partitions encrypted with Truecrypt, and I am wondering when I put my laptop to hibernation if the encryption ...
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580 views

How to detect malicious code sending information to attacker's server in linux

Suppose you have some malicious code on your linux laptop, for example a rootkit or trojan or something like that. Now restrict your attention to the case that the malicious code does transfer some ...
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537 views

How does SELinux affect the Linux Kernel networking stack?

I'm interested in how SELinux effects the processing of packets through the networking stack. I've found the following questions and answers: Network policies under AppArmor/SELinux Filtering ...
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Is Linux spying on its users? [closed]

If you install some kind of Linux distributions on your computer, is their a possibility that their owners may spy on you? For example, can Ubuntu, Kali or Arch linux send data to its owners on what ...
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Is it better to use a root password, or use 'sudo bash'?

When I am doing a lot of sudo operations, I like to spawn a bash shell from sudo to make the operations go quicker. I am against assigning a root password because I do not like the root account ...
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How secure is it to keep the salt with the password hash? [duplicate]

In Linux we have the salt just next to the password hash in the /etc/shadows file. I always hear that salt value prevents hashed passwords from being cracked by brute force methods. But if somehow we ...
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software to keep a list of IP that try to access ssh over a set of rules and feasibility

i'm interested in software or set of scripts to keep a lists of filtered IP that attempt to brute-force ssh, and to label an IP as brute-forcing i would add some checks like: one attempt to log as ...
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What are the risks of making ether-wake available to all users?

The Linux ether-wake utility, which creates a magic packet to wake on lan another machine, requires root access: $ether-wake 12:34:56:78:9A:BC ether-wake: This program must be run as root. To give ...
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Can you describe a real-life scenario of exploiting sticky bits?

Sticky bit are mentioned in every UNIX security book, but I couldn't find anyone that describes the exploitation of Sticky Bit set on a file. Can you?
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657 views

How do I protect myself against the attacks in this php script?

Due to a vulnerability in how PHP was installed (Shared VPS with PHP installed as an Apache module instead of CGI) and hence how OSCommerce was configured (with security of 777 on certain directories),...
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HOWTO : Email encryption in a browser

I have read about encryption and I think it's a good idea for me to encrypt my email. I run ubuntu 12.10 and use Firefox for browsing. In my quest for learning how to use gmail/hotmail to send and ...
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Making passwd/shadow files more secure

The passwd/shadow files in a unix-like OS contain sensitive info such as a user's password. In addition those files aren't necessarily secured: with a live CD we can access those files on the hard ...
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How to use VNC with SSH tunnel - “is this howto secure”?

PC-A: the local machine, from where i want to see the remote machine [Fedora] PC-B: the remote machine, where the vnc server will be [Ubuntu] install a vnc client [from where you want to connect] on ...
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Preventing Attacks Scanning for PHPMyAdmin etc

I have a Linux web server running Rails and each time I check the Nginx logs I find attempts to access PHPMyAdmin, database and admin directories such as this: 190.196.161.110 - - [16/Oct/2011:23:37:...
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What are the security considerations for setting up a basic security testing environment?

I only have 2 spare machines and both are very old, but I really want to set up an environment so that I can start practicing security. One of these machines has a Pentium 4 processor and 512 MB RAM; ...
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Using 'sudo vim' to spawn a shell

I've recently read here an answer from a user about the way he hacked a server in a CTF contest. At some point in the description, he said that he did sudo vim and then spawned a shell via VIM using ...
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Increase security without using “dynamic” kernel modules?

I recently read that NOT using loadable kernel modules could increase security. In my interpretation this consist about recomplying the kernel with only built-in kernel modules. (how to disable ...
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1answer
179 views

Hidden directory with 0x0d0x0a

Someone has hidden a directory to fool policies on a FTP account. The directory name was 0x0d0x0a. How did the user create a folder with that name? The directory is nearly invisible with ls but ...
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3answers
964 views

Live Linux which does not mount any hard drive in the computer

I am searching for a Linux System which runs from a CD and does not mount any hard drive of the computer. I want to prevent any possiblity to write something on the hard drive of the computer and on ...
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2answers
140 views

Is there a reason why /proc/interrupts is world-readable?

Reading this recent research paper on how to use information from /proc/interrupts to attack a system, I was wondering whether there is a particular reason why /proc/interrupts is world-readable. ...
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166 views

Securely decommissioning a dedicated server

One of my dedicated hosting CentOS servers hit 12 years. I received an end-of-life notice on it, and I started receiving SMART errors as well. I guess it's time to let it go. But before I do, I'd like ...
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253 views

Best approach for restricting remote ssh session

Using the following files, I have attempted to restrict the SSH remote login. Having lack of knowledge in linux environment, I don't know the drawbacks and vulnerabilities between the following ways. ...
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881 views

Is Encrpyting Home Sufficient?

I currently have a fully encrypted Windows System, and I'm looking at switching to Ubuntu. Is encrypting my home directory (with ecryptfs) sufficient? On windows this would be problematic due to ...
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possible exploits through avahi daemon

It is always recommended to disable Avahi daemon, for security reasons, when not in use. So, by what ways it is possible to exploit a system which has avahi daemon service running? And how can we ...
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Securing USB flash drive on linux

We have a industrial system(running on linux) with a USB port. We have the USB port only for copying certain data. Other than this we don't want the USB drive to contain any other executables or ...
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1answer
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Does Fedora 15 still use suid bits?

I heard that Fedora 15 will not use suid bits. Is that true? Is the suid bit a security design bug?
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Did CVE-2016-2324 allowed remote code execution?

Let’s say I have this kind of code : // In revision.c char *path_name(const struct name_path *path, const char *name) // by design, name_path->len is a 32 bits int, but this doesn’t concern name { ...
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Escalating from Apache shell to root

I have one noob question.I tried to exploit shellshock on my Slackware linux server, but after I connect with reverse shell and User Agent I get that I am apache user and apache user don't have too ...
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1answer
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How are shopkeepers getting the MAC address of wifi enabled smartphones?

It is clear that some big malls are tracking all the wifi-enabled mobile phones before they are connected to the network... How can this be done? I have a similar issue... how to get the MAC address ...
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You've just acquired a newly created CentOS server, what should you do to secure it?

I've just acquired a new CentOS server, which will be hosting a Ruby on rails application, it is public facing. What should I do to secure this server?
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What are the most common files to check with File integrity monitoring software?

I have a file integrity monitoring suite and in it I have to select specific files and folders for it to monitor. There are some obvious services that I want monitored like our web-server. Is there a ...
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120 views

Can malicious software be installed inside Linux swap partition?

Is it possible for a virus of any kind to be installed inside Linux swap partition? If so, could it be transferred to the system even after formatting the Linux partition only and reinstalling the OS (...
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2answers
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What are the implications of including binary blobs in the Linux kernel?

According to this there are compelling reasons for caution when installing obfuscated binaries. Knowing this, how can running binary blobs as a part of the Linux kernel be acceptable from a security ...
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404 views

Vulnerability testing without the use of exploits?

I was doing some testing on a server to see if it was vulnerable to a 0-day local exploit (the exploit was for gaining root privileges using a bug in the Linux kernel). There was no real information ...
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Linux forensics questions (ssh config, user activity)

I'm a linux noob and have an assignment I'm a bit stumped on... We're given VirtualBox (vdi) images and raw files for the state of a linux server at 3 different dates. We're supposed to answer: ...
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2answers
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How can I use nmap to distinguish between a normal linux machine and an android device?

According to this link: here, nmap 5.2 onwards is now supposed to detect android smartphones. I am using nmap 6.01 but it only identifies android devices as running a linux kernel.
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SSH: Security of Pubkey Authentication vs Password

Why is Pubkey Authentication considered more secure than a password, and does this apply to my situation (described in more detail below)? I'm a scientist (no formal IT training), but I built and ...
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Linux random number compliance

Not sure if this is the right forum, and I am pretty sure that his must have been answered before (I searched a lot but I haven't found a definitive answer). Do the Linux random number generators (/...
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Ordering of the PATH environment variable

Locally here on Ubuntu 14.04, my $PATH looks something like this: PATH="/usr/local/sbin:/usr/local/bin:/usr/sbin:/usr/bin:/sbin:/bin:/usr/games:/usr/local/games" When I manually define the path for ...
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How to grant permission to read a text file to a specific application run by a regular user?

A text file is situated in /opt/somefolder. It contains a pair login - password read by an application when authenticating on a server. The application is run by a regular user, so that the file can ...