The protection of personnel, hardware, programs, networks, and data from physical circumstances and events.

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why Windows Firewall in XP cannot block outbound connections

wikipedia say: XP's Windows Firewall cannot block outbound connections; it is only capable of blocking inbound ones. another article says: XP defends you with your traffic coming from the web but ...
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1answer
100 views

Best way to secure file removals in Windows remotely

I have Windows 2008 R2 box on colocation. I want to remove certain files with a high degree guarantee it cannot be recovered from physical HDD access. Could someone please explain what levels of ...
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3answers
287 views

Petraeus scandal - what would have been a better way to communicate electronically [closed]

Not a security professional here but .... having read through how it happened, it's clear sending these emails from the shared account by Paula Broadwell was the problem (if I understand correctly). ...
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6answers
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Will antivirus detect all keyloggers?

Our company schedules Security Training courses for our personnel. In order for us to test them, we develop code such as keyloggers which we email to our personnel to detect stupid personnel, and of ...
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2answers
2k views

How can vending machines be hacked? And how can I prevent it?

I am developing a vending machine and want to make it secure. In a comment to my previous question, @Polynomial said "Vending machines (and similar devices) can often be pwned via buffer overflows on ...
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6answers
2k views

Is it safe to use virtual machines when examining malware?

We want to study for the CEH program and have downloaded 12 DVDs that 6 DVDs are software key-loggers, Trojans, etc. that are all detected by antivirus. This prevents us from examining them and ...
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2answers
1k views

How does syskey in Windows increase the security in a domain?

I use syskey in windows XP and Windows 7. I've read Microsoft's article but I have questions. How does this solution increase security? What are differences between using Syskey in a client that ...
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13answers
8k views

Why do we lock our computers?

It's common knowledge that if somebody has physical access to your machine they can do whatever they want with it1. So why do we always lock our computers? If somebody has physical access to my ...
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2answers
389 views

A security checklist for choosing an internet hosting service provider for a virtual private server?

I am in the process of choosing an internet hosting service provider for my website. Besides looking at the reputation of the hosting provider through internet forums, is there a more concrete way of ...
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How can you judge the physical security of a padlock?

I recently learnt to pick locks. Eager to test out my skills, I tried picking a padlock I'd been using on a secure storage box for a number of years, and found that it only had one pin - I can get ...
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3answers
489 views

What are the security implications of phone based keyless entry systems?

I have just been reading about Lockitron which promises to provide phone based keyless entry for the home. As great an idea as this sounds it strikes me that it could come along with some very serious ...
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3answers
2k views

is it possible to create a login “key” out of a USB drive?

I was recently thinking about keeping my computer secure from physical access, and i decided that the safest way to keep my data under lock and key, was to do just that: Create a lock and key out of a ...
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179 views

Securing mail deliveries in a multi-tenant office building

I am concerned that that postal mail (and other deliveries not requiring a signature) may be at risk from theft or unauthorised access. My company is based in a multi-tenant office with an unattended ...
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1answer
439 views

Does setting a firmware password add security if FileVault 2 is enabled?

On an up-to-date OS X computer with FileVault 2 (whole-disk encryption, minus the recovery partition), is any security gained by setting a firmware password, as well?
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3answers
1k views

What can a hacker do when he has physical access to a system?

I mean, I'm a tech guy here in my region (not a hacker...). When I sit in the front of another person's PC, I notice a little fear about what I can do in the system. It's obvious that I will not ...
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3answers
1k views

How do I improve the physical security of a rack cabinet?

I've got an 8U 19-inch server rack cabinet with two locks - one on the front panel, one on the rear panel. The locks are small cam locks, but the cam part is rather thin and flimsy-looking. I could ...
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1answer
326 views

When a company asks to test physical security, what are some techniques one could use to gain entry?

When a company asks to test physical/infrastructure security, what are some techniques one could use to test employees? This could include good excuses to gain access to some hardware/software.
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3answers
131 views

What would be a good way to guarantee security of theft and loss of sensitive data in a shared rack?

Two of my servers are in a shared rack, we secure them by adding frontcovers to the machines. The DC is always recording with a camera when one of the shared racks is opened and they write down what ...
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3answers
411 views

Risks of Mullions in High Security Areas

I have a storage space full of information assets. The room itself is sound; there are no windows, the walls go all the ceiling, and there is only a single entrance with two good stout doors and high ...
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7answers
1k views

Protecting critical state infrastructure from the aftermath of a nuclear blast

Countries rely on computer infrastructure for a huge percentage of communications and military management, as well as utilities like electricity. Unfortunately, nuclear attacks release massive ...
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4answers
1k views

How do you prevent physical backups from being stolen?

I'm sure, by now, we're all aware of the need to encrypt backup disks, but what can be done on the physical security side of things to prevent backups from being stolen or damaged? Particularly: ...
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1answer
411 views

Standards for physical Access Control systems

Hoping to help protect an IT installation, I've been looking into physical protection systems, specifically Access Control for protected areas. The field is quite big. Are there any US or ...
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1answer
1k views

What camera resolution is required to identify human faces?

I've been asked to recommend an IP-based security camera in attempt to prevent, or at least record, repeated acts of vandalism occurring at the front of a property. Budget is a concern (The damage ...
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2answers
2k views

Safely disable firewire/thunderbolt, patching up DMA exposure

I understand that Firewire 400/800 and Thunderbolt have DMA enabled, and a malicious hardware device can easily read and manipulate system memory at will. If I disable the software drivers for these ...
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2answers
188 views

What value security wise, if any, does a digital handwritten signature have?

Here's an example of what I mean: (It's basically the same thing as a traditional signature.) Given I've never seen someone fail this control, it's unclear to me what real security such a system ...
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1answer
340 views

What makes a secure smartcard secure? Is contactless/RFID better?

In short what security features exist that I should look for in a smart card? What physical features exist, which are important? It appears smart cards may exhibit different levels of wear and ...
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2answers
632 views

External IP same as Internal IP security

Where I live my ISP does not give IP addresses out. My external IP address is the same as my external if I plug directly into the wall with no router. My ISP does give everybody a "router", that is ...
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3answers
480 views

Is there such thing as a password enforced write protected flash drive?

We would like to provide a flash drive to a client, that they can boot to, which includes a read-only operating system of our own customization, probably Linux. Every boot, it starts from clean slate. ...
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1answer
719 views

Cutting and sniffing fiberoptic cables - time before detection?

Suppose you'd cut a fiberoptic cable with two razor sharp mirrors, reflecting the traffic out into your sniffing device and then back into the wire again. How fast would you need to get the traffic up ...
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3answers
603 views

Cheap door logging for home?

Does someone here knows a cheap DIY door logging system? What I have: - 2 doors that needs to be logged - 1 netbook (running OpenBSD with internet connection & root permissions), the two doors ...
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1answer
2k views

good product to physical lock down a mac mini server?

Since recent theft of a mac mini and macbook pro Im looking into products to lock down the mac mini server 2011 model. There are many cable solutions out there like kensington but the mac mini has no ...
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7answers
5k views

Physical computer security, how to disable USB ports when the computer is 'locked'?

Lets say my PC & server is in an environment where a theoretical attacker has physical access to the machine while I'm not there. Now the data is encrypted on the hard drive with TrueCrypt. ...
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11answers
5k views

Is it possible to turn a computer into a bomb?

I know this newspaper article sounds absurd. Even if a machine is compromised we (should) have hardware safe guards in all our devices to prevent the software from damaging the hardware. But is it ...
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4answers
310 views

Help to account all the points of physical access to a rack server to steal software

Let's say I want to move my 1U Dell server to co-location site with a hostile company who will try to steal my code (this is almost 90% probability if I dont take steps)... The limitation for their ...
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4answers
268 views

Is there a security device to register unauthorised physical access?

I understand that it is not possible to secure your software if a third party has physical access to the box (eg colo). So may be I can install some sort of hardware (like a seal) which only need to ...
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3answers
353 views

Securing a LAN without Physical Security

I've got an interesting dilemma. I have a large (50+ users) office that is going to be on the campus of a local university. The purpose is to foster collaboration, etc, but the open environment is ...
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1answer
417 views

How to apply IT Security knowledge to Home Security?

Today my car got stolen from my house, and it is possible the person who did it has access to my home. I try to take secure measures online to maintain security, yet it seems I never paid attention to ...
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7answers
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Methods for protecting computer systems from physical attacks

I am interested in cost effective and creative ideas for detecting physical attacks against computer systems. This includes, but is not limited to Tamper Evident security measures. Consider the ...
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8answers
11k views

Are powerline ethernet adapters inherently secure?

I have 2 Zyxel PLA407 powerline adapters. Router is downstairs connected to one adapter, other adapter is upstairs about 30 feet away connected to a desktop. I have a house, not an apartment or ...
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4answers
325 views

How to test a physical machine?

In two weeks time, I will have to test a couple of computers that a client would like to provide to its employees. The main concern is making sure that the employees won't be able to use those ...
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3answers
560 views

Physical laptop lock

I brought this really great laptop, but I cannot find something that I can lock the laptop physically to the desk or prevent a thief from grabbing this laptop. There is no "universal" hole there that ...
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3answers
158 views

Requiring Authentication to Exit

I've often wondered why facilities do not require authentication as a default on exit. Beyond the oblivious reasons: Fire safety policies would require a panic mechanism to override the access ...
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4answers
410 views

Best practices for physically securing a notebook

If the user knows that other people will repeatedly have physical access to her notebook - running Linux - while she is absent, and that there is no way around this, what are best practices for ...
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4answers
760 views

Securing an area both physically and technically

I work for a commercial printing company, and we're beginning to get a couple jobs labeled "High Security". Essentially this means that if any pictures/information/files/etc. of the product were ...
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3answers
4k views

Using RFID-only on door lock to house?

I'm thinking of equipping the door to my house with an RFID-reader and a custom arduino-like board to do the authentication. My question is what is the recommended security level for a normal house ...
19
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9answers
814 views

What's a good way to trigger a hidden 'distress signal' in instant messaging?

Here's the scenario: Alice and bob use Off-the-record messaging to communicate over IM. The have: Encryption Authentication Deniability Perfect forward secrecy They communicate after ...
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4answers
166 views

How to choose/compromise between data protection, and device recovery?

I'm sure many of you have probably seen (online or in-person) the DEFCON 18 presentation, demonstrating what can happen if you steal a hacker's computer. For those who haven't, the link is below. ...
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5answers
367 views

Resources for physical security questions

What are good resources for the physical security questions that IT organizations face? Like best practices for locks and seals on servers and kiosks, personnel access mechanisms and policies, ...
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3answers
3k views

How can I prevent someone from accessing a Windows XP system via boot disk?

Apparently a computer system protected by a a login password, e.g. Windows XP, can be easily hacked by someone with physical access to it using methods like this one: ...
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1answer
633 views

access control to data-center using rfid

I don't know if "here" is the right place to make this kind of question... so here it is.. Is rfid a good solution for controlling access to a data-center? Because rfid is "wireless", is it ...