Details on how data is being kept in memory/on disks, most frequently being applied to databases, media banks and backup-recovery solutions.

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28
votes
4answers
10k views

Why is writing zeros (or random data) over a hard drive multiple times better than just doing it once?

Lots of different programs, such as Darik's Boot and Nuke, let you write over a hard drive multiple times under the guise of it being more secure than just doing it once. Why?
28
votes
8answers
6k views

How can I reliably erase all information on a hard drive?

As storage technologies change over time, using different encodings and remappings to deal with sector errors, the best way to permanently erase/wipe/shred data changes also. Methods for flash drives ...
18
votes
3answers
1k views

ZX Spectrum tape loader: how was copy prevention implemented?

I am curious how copy prevention was implemented for games or other programs loaded from cassette on the micro computers of the early 1980s, such as the ZX Spectrum 48k. If I recall correctly, some ...
13
votes
2answers
479 views

Secure wiping of EEPROM and flash memory

Older magnetic storage exhibited some data remanence, so a recommendation emerged to wipe data by overwriting it multiple times with varying patterns — the “Gutmann wipe”. More recent hard disk ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

How secure is Intel SSD Encryption?

Are there any known flaws in the full disk encryption on Intel 520 series SSD drives? Specifically, it seems these drives generate an internal AES key automatically, even when no password is set. But ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

When using AES and CBC, is it necessary to keep the IV secret?

If I encrypt some data with a randomly generated Key and Initialization Vector, then store all three pieces of information in the same table row; is it necessary to encrypt the IV as well as the Key? ...
8
votes
2answers
238 views

Is it really secure to store API keys in environment variables?

This site says it is best to keep API keys in environment variable out of the code. And here Storing Credentials Securely You should take great care to ensure your credentials are stored ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How should an application store its credentials

When developing desktop applications, you will occasionally have to store credentials somewhere to be able to authenticate your application. An example of this is a Facebook app ID + secret, another ...
6
votes
6answers
12k views

It is safe to store photos and documents on skydrive / google cloud services?

I have over 20GB of photos and documents stored on my hard disk without a backup. I'm thinking about saving all of them in a cloud service such as Microsoft Skydrive or google cloud, but I'm wondering ...
6
votes
6answers
757 views

Implications of securing data in RAM

Someone told me that his company is storing all application data (at least the sensitive data I guess) in RAM for security. Their application runs for long periods of time, so data stays in memory for ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it okay for API secret to be stored in plain text or decrypt-able?

Aren't API keys considered usernames and API secrets considered passwords? Why is it that API servers like Amazon Web Services allow you to view your API secret in plain text? It makes me think they ...
5
votes
2answers
357 views

Encrypt user data when they log in with Facebook, Gmail, etc

I made a login system. The user can login by: using a normal email / password (bcrypted). using a service like facebook, gmail, etc. So far so good. Now I want to store sensitive information (ftp ...
5
votes
2answers
282 views

What SSD maker has implemented Secure Erase to spec?

I have a Kingston hyperx drive circa 2012. I kicked off a secure erase on it. I then remounted the drive and was horrified (well, not really more like bemused) to see my whole parts of my old file ...
4
votes
4answers
961 views

Does a commercially available self destructing HDD (set in BIOS) exist?

Does a self destructing HDD (physically destruction) that will destroy after a certain time exist, or when I use some software to initiate its self-destruction? I guess it need to be set in BIOS or ...
4
votes
4answers
371 views

Security of Cloud Storage

What are the main security risks of popular cloud storage services such as Dropbox? I am torn between the convenience of cloud storage and the potential security risk of it. How can I evaluate whether ...
4
votes
1answer
121 views

Keeping a user's passwords, but can't hash them

I'm making a web application to provide intermediary service for customers to facilitate their interaction with a set of other web applications. A simplified example would be to let a user access his ...
4
votes
1answer
746 views

Do TrueCrypt volumes look like random data?

Let say I use Eraser (or other tools) to erase my hard drive (using DoD standards which is 7 times or Gutmann which is 35 times), These eraser tools just write random data on the hard drive many ...
4
votes
2answers
214 views

Security of PGP for Long-Term Storage

How secure are PGP/GPG encrypted mails? I realize that it's probably fine for regular e-mail scenarios, but what about the security over longer time periods (>30 years)? Is the 4096 bit limit for ...
3
votes
2answers
89 views

How can I ensure that Dropbox is using only its folder?

I'm using several cloude storage services, like Dropbox. Each have windows app for its synchronization, and this app actually can read anything from my disc, not just files from its 'synchronized' ...
3
votes
1answer
149 views

Safe ways to store passwords without hashing them

I'm working on an email client for Windows, and to send emails, my application needs to have the email address and the password of that email address. When the user gives his password, I store it ...
3
votes
3answers
107 views

Are mail-servers removed from security concerns in contrast with cloud storage?

I have meet people and even businesses that are against using the cloud for data storage invoking security risks. In the same time they seem perfectly fine using email services (usually from obscure ...
3
votes
5answers
348 views

PCI-DSS and salt storage

PCI-DSS states the following: 3.5 Protect any keys used to secure cardholder data against disclosure and misuse I have a service which stores a salted bcrypt hash of the user's PAN. Assuming the ...
3
votes
2answers
171 views

How secure is the private storage of a mobile app

Are there any know security flaws/hacks to gain access to the private storage(file system or SQLite database) of Android and iOS applications? What measures do Google and Apple take to "prevent" ...
3
votes
2answers
404 views

Deduplication of Encrypted Files

Let's assume I have an 18GB database that is backed up nightly by dumping the database and then encrypted using a modern algorithm such as AES-256. This database has a daily update of rate of ...
3
votes
3answers
507 views

How can salted, hashed password storage be combined with a plaintext, nonce and hash based authentication?

My understanding is as follows: To securely store a password (e.g. in a database), you use a hashing algorithm designed for this purpose (designed to be slow, e.g. bcrypt), and you use a unique salt ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

Optimise user data fetch using S3

I'm writing a mobile app that communicates with my server using REST. Upon every launch, the app makes a call to the server api to check whether there was a change in the user details (using a ...
3
votes
2answers
475 views

Shutdown: Clear virtual memory pagefile

I was reading about Windows Local Policy of "Shutdown: Clear virtual memory pagefile". I need some clarification on this brief policy description: What do it mean by operating system that allow ...
3
votes
1answer
223 views

Remote System Administration of an Encryption-Switch-Encrypted Infrastructure

I can't seem to find a decent explanation anywhere of the practicalities of remote system administration (e.g. SSH) of an encryption-switch-encrypted SAN-stored infrastructure. The environment will ...
3
votes
1answer
124 views

Updating stored, encrypted containers on a server

My scenario is this -- I want to store an encrypted container on a network server. This encrypted container should be accessible to others to download and decrypt/mount locally provided they have the ...
2
votes
6answers
244 views

Is it okay to wrap a cryptographic hash with MD5 for storage?

Is there any security issues if you wrap your cryptographic hash with MD5 for storage purposes? For example: $hash = md5(hash($password,$salt,$rounds)); Note: hash() uses scrypt or bcrypt or pbkdf2 ...
2
votes
3answers
224 views

PCI Compliance Problem

My company is trying to become fully PCI Compliant and we are switching our outdated systems to use Authorize.net CIM among other things. But, currently we're all over the place and until our new ...
2
votes
1answer
25 views

Tools for Verifying Secure Deletion

It is recommended to verify the zeroing-out was done properly when you try to secure delete a HDD. From this post, some drives with firmware bugs prevent secure erase from working properly. What are ...
2
votes
1answer
165 views

How to safely “remember” login information in a program [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to Securely Implement a “Remember Me” Feature? I have a program that communicates with a server. The user must log in with the application which runs on their ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

How to set up a user-friendly NAS encryption?

We recently installed one NAS drive (Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo, LS-WVL, running the most recent Firmware version 1.6 to be precise) in our (small) company network. Currently, there is no encryption ...
2
votes
1answer
177 views

Which mobile phone OS implements or plan to implement data protection using keys derived from passwords per NIST SP800-132?

NIST has released Special Publication 800-132: Recommendation for Password-Based Key Derivation which is meant for protection of stored data using encryption keys derived from user password. This ...
2
votes
0answers
61 views

HIPAA compliant blob storage architecture

There is a task to design a system to store sensitive data securely (should be HIPAA compliant in the future). It's just a draft - this will not be used in production in a foreseeable future. I have a ...
2
votes
1answer
76 views

Locality Sensitive Hash (LSH) function to approximately match old passwords

Recently, I ran across a website that requires me to change my password after X number of days had passed since I had last created one. Intelligently, the service made sure that the password did not ...
1
vote
1answer
104 views

Xbox 360 Security - Why must you be the data owner to move content?

Xbox 360 does not allow you to move content (such as to a usb), unless you are the owner of the content (Same gamertag as save file). This seems pointless considering, I can simply sign into any ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

How secure is the web-based file browser that comes with my NAS?

I have a Buffalo Linkstation Pro 2 Duo for home use. It has a web GUI for browsing the contents of the NAS (distinct from the admin interface). The idea is that you would expose the web GUI to the ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Where do I securely store application-specific symmetric key?

I am writing an application App1. This application uses SQLite database and I plan to encrypt it using AES256. For symmetric encryption I need a key, which I need to store somewhere. From a similar ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

Database field type for password storage?

In the past I used varchar(255) for storing hashed passwords (no salt). Is this still enough? Or are longer fields required?
1
vote
1answer
420 views

Browser cache, cookies, active logins and other data

This question is regarding common browsers, even though I may refer to Firefox settings. Not IE though, I wouldn't expect that to be in any way secure. I'm seeking to know how secure it is to let the ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Hashing password for secure storage (generating salt)

I wanted to check if the following means of generating a hash for storage of a password was secure. I have an username and password combo. In order to generate a secure hash, I am doing the ...
0
votes
2answers
154 views

Is my domain registrar storing my password in cleartext? [closed]

I called my domain registrar (unnamed here but not difficult to find out and a major provider) about a year ago to have them change some DNS settings. While on the phone, the customer service rep had ...
0
votes
3answers
91 views

Best way to store passwords for a LAN tool?

I am making an app in Python for linux as a front end to the router (to automate some tasks). But I need to log in to the router before I can do any operations on it and since it uses a http-auth I ...
0
votes
1answer
286 views

How to encrypt files without giving the user access? [duplicate]

I don't know if I should ask this question on security.SE or stackoverflow, so please move my post if necessary. I want to store my (C#) application data in a way that the user cannot read or modify ...
0
votes
2answers
283 views

How do i know if I have moved or copied a file from my SD card to PC? [closed]

is there any way to know if the file I have on my mini-SD card was moved or copied to my PC? i have sensitive files on my SD card which is stolen and i cant remember if I cut or copied the file from ...
0
votes
1answer
3k views

What method of secure erase is sufficient for MacBook Pro SSD Drives? [duplicate]

I would like to securely erase the hard drive of a SSD in a MacBook Pro. The Disk Utility does not give me the option to wipe this drive even when I boot into the System Partition. (it is greyed ...
0
votes
2answers
65 views

How do you protect strings in code from users decompiling them and seeing them [duplicate]

For an example say we have an application such as a client based application which connects to an API using an api key. We are saying for this purpose there is no OAuth. How would a string or in this ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

Are there any secure ways to store the secret key used in a TOTP scheme?

I'm writing a little webapp that demonstrates 2 factor authentication. I'm using the TOTP protocol as described in RFC 6238. In our scheme, we are storing, in addition to a b-crypted password hash ...