Related to security concerns specific to the Microsoft Windows operating system itself. For security of applications that happen to be running on Windows, please use [appsec]. For the X Window System, please use [x11].

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7
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2answers
6k views

How can I view the NTFS $MFT using correct field names?

I am trying to view an NTFS master file table. Each tool I have used so far extracts all of the entries, but puts non standard headers such as STANDARD_INFORMATION_ON instead of say $...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

Breaking out of a strict linux sandbox running virtually under windows: do the linux-sandbox access control policies even matter?

I am developing an application which will run untrusted code. I have been designing it for linux, thinking that I can just run it in a virtual machine on windows when the need arises. The linux ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

What information is exposed by simply opening an RDP connection to the internet?

Microsoft, Rackspace and other hosted providers allows people to RDP into that server. Here are a few examples: Microsoft has something called "Azure Connect" it is very easy to expose a domain ...
7
votes
1answer
377 views

How secure is my DPAPI Master Key if I enable biometric login?

I understand that Windows DPAPI master keys are encrypted (directly or indirectly) with the user's login password - see e.g. Does DPAPI works if a user hasn't a login password? If I understand ...
7
votes
2answers
15k views

Can running a browser in Windows Compatibility Mode be a security issue?

I have several clients that are having trouble logging into vendor's web service. When talking to the vendor about the issue, they told me to set them up with Chrome running in Windows XP ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Reconstructing bittorrent data from PCAP

I am doing a CTF flag for my school project with a PCAP flag based on this CTF write-up: eindbazen.net - Plaid CTF 2012 - Torrent I setup a local torrent file containing an .mp3 (the audio is my flag'...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

NVidia update service creates local account on system. Does anyone know the users password?

Nvidia update service has created a local user on several of my boxes. Does anyone know its password? I recon it could possible be leveraged as an entry way for an attacker. Details: wmic ...
7
votes
4answers
8k views

Preferred UAC configuration in Enterprises that use Login scripts to map drives?

In Windows 7, Vista and newer OS's, UAC will prevent logon scripts from mapping hard drives so that the following logon script code won't work: Dim WshNetwork Set WshNetwork = WScript.CreateObject("...
7
votes
1answer
284 views

When TrueCrypt prompts to re-enable automatic mounting, should I be worried?

Assume one day you receive the following error from TrueCrypt: is that a reason to worry that someone may have removed the disk (in my case disk 0) and used it offline and then put it back into the ...
7
votes
0answers
235 views

Windows 10 installaton USBs sold by Microsoft [closed]

With the recent release of Microsoft's Windows 10, I dropped by a local Microsoft store to purchase a windows 10 installation media. To my surprise (somewhat) the employees said that they do not ...
6
votes
7answers
8k 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. ...
6
votes
4answers
622 views

Would running VMs inside of VMs be a more secure way to study viruses, etc?

I was reading this post on SuperUser, and it made me wonder about security. I've read somewhere else that some viruses/malware/whatever CAN break outside of a VM... and then infect the host OS. BUT, ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

How could disabling 'Hide File Extensions' in Windows make a system more secure?

I'm reading up on the Cryptolocker virus, and I came across this comment, it says: And one additional measure: disable the default "Hide extensions for known file types" check box in Explorer. I ...
6
votes
3answers
651 views

How to respond to attack made from my dedicated server?

There was a sudden unusual peak of outbound traffic from my hosted dedicated server (OS - Windows Server 2008 R2). The hoster threatened to block the server if the problem is not solved. There are an ...
6
votes
3answers
27k views

Windows 7 Password Hash Security

I recently came across a number of sources that suggest that cracking Windows user account passwords is easy by examining their password hashes. I understand that these hashes are stored in the SAM ...
6
votes
4answers
6k views

What does Windows's built-in encryption do, if I can seemingly always read my encrypted files?

I'm playing around with certificates and encryption on a Windows system, but either it isn't working or I don't know how it should works. When I encrypt a file its name changes to green. But then, I ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Is it possible to catch a virus on my LAN without clicking on anything?

My unpatched PC running Windows is connected to a network which contains other "infected" computers, can I get infected by viruses without any interaction on my part?
6
votes
1answer
8k views

Where is my password stored on Windows 7?

Is there a specific location where the passwords are stored ? Are they salted ?
6
votes
2answers
3k views

How would I go about rebuilding the IAT of a packed executable?

When executables are packed with a tool such as UPX, the real code and data sections are encrypted or obfuscated, then loaded into memory using an injected decrypter stub. This makes static analysis ...
6
votes
3answers
288 views

Does malware persist after wiping hard drive and reinstalling OS from manufacturer disc? [duplicate]

This question is related to a computer where users other than the owner have had access for periods of several hours at a time. The following steps have been taken to clean the computer: Used ...
6
votes
4answers
5k views

Man-in-the-middle Blue Coat proxy SSL or what?

I have just discovered that my workplace has enabled some new features in the Blue Coat network proxy. It seems like all HTTPS certificates in Chrome on Windows are being issued by this internal ...
6
votes
2answers
6k views

Is opening port 3389 on a router and forwarding this to a Windows SBS 2003 server secure?

I know of a company who has port 3389 open on their router and forwards this to a Windows SBS 2003 server. The server has the Windows firewall switched on, is patched and has an up to date antivirus ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

What differences are there between built-in Administrator and other Administrators?

Are there any significant differences in the rights, privileges, permissions, or other powers held by the built-in Administrator account, and those held by non-built-in Administrator accounts?
6
votes
3answers
2k views

NTLMv2 resistance to bruteforcing

I have a question regarding NTLMv2 resistance to password bruteforcing. I know that some modern graphic processors (like Radeon 6990) are able to calculate billions hashes per second and crack NTLM ...
6
votes
3answers
929 views

How to effectively (and reasonably) secure Windows in corporate environment.

A member on my staff recently had their work computer compromised while on their home network. The following is the information regarding their computer Windows XP SP3 - fully patched at the time of ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

Can a certificate have multiple chains and multiple self-signed roots?

The following MSFT document has this paragraph: All possible certificate chains are built using locally cached certificates. If none of the certificate chains ends in a self-signed ...
6
votes
1answer
9k views

Download Windows 7 security updates and patch offline

I am planning to do a clean Windows 7 OS installation. Is it possible (and/or recommendable) to download all the Windows 7 Security Updates from Microsoft in advance and patch my fresh Windows 7 ...
6
votes
1answer
12k views

Should the thumbprint be SHA2 in addition to the Signature Hash Algorithm?

I'm looking at a Windows PKI and see that the Thumbprint is SHA1, while the Signature is SHA2 (SHA256). Is this an acceptable configuration? Should I recommend that the client update to SHA2 for a ...
6
votes
4answers
14k views

Secure use of psexec or better alternative to it

I want to remotely start VMWare virtual machines (I own VMWare Workstation) and to this end I need to execute on host something like "vmrun -T ws H:\VMWare\VM1\VM1.vmx nogui" with user desktop context,...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

What are the security implications of enabling WINRM on all domain members?

As Powershell becomes more and more popular, it appears that using WINRM may end up being a better option than using PSEXEC from SysInternals for remote management. Given that WINRM is disabled by ...
6
votes
1answer
137 views

What are Non-linear/backward overwrites?

I read some slides from the Black Hat USA 2012 conference, and I stumbled across the term non-­linear/backward overwrite, mentioned on slide 5 of the Exploit Mitigation Improvements in Windows 8 by ...
6
votes
1answer
334 views

Secure access to a Microsoft Access Database

I have a server set up with medical files in a Access database. I am taking over this job from an existing guy who has vanished, so I don't know all the details of the system. I can find out specific ...
6
votes
1answer
329 views

Using Two-Factor Authentication to Stop Pass-the-Hash

Am looking into mitigations to Pass+the-Hash and Pass-the-Ticket in Active Directory that also improve overall network security, too. Have sorting through some of the many two+factor authentication ...
6
votes
1answer
4k views

ISP glitch or a malware? Has this ever happened to you?

Brief background: I consider myself a relatively paranoid power-user, if not an absolute pro. I regularly update my AV and keep up with all the latest updates on my Windows 7 machine. But what ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Should I only disable, but never delete an account from ActiveDirectory?

In the early days of NT4, I would never delete an account from the domain because I would lose the correlation between the SID and username in event logs and all related audit trails. Is this a ...
6
votes
2answers
160 views

What is the purpose of Intermediate Certification Authorities store in Windows?

Suppose I have CA1 root certificate and two intermediate CA2 and CA3 certificates issued by CA1. Would it pose any security issue if all of the intermediate certificates were installed in the root ...
6
votes
2answers
712 views

Limiting Concurrent Login For System Admins On Windows Domain

Quick background: we are a smaller sized team meaning that we perform multi-function roles. Thus a developer is typically a DBA as well and some developers do have domain admin access. As a rule our ...
6
votes
1answer
940 views

Browsers silently adding trusted root certificates in Windows

When accessing https://internetbanking.caixa.gov.br (site of a well known bank in Brazil), the server returns a certificate signed by "Autoridade Certificadora Raiz Brasileira" (Brazilian Root ...
6
votes
1answer
3k views

How do I apply a security baseline to Windows 2008 R2?

I've setup a Windows 2008 R2 server with an Active Directory Domain Services role. I would like to apply the Specialized Security – Limited Functionality (SSLF) security baseline to it, but am unsure ...
6
votes
1answer
110 views

Can windows domains be faked?

Without the equipment and software (and knowledge yet) readily available to test myself, I've been wondering about the relationship between computers and domains in a Windows environment. Some ...
6
votes
1answer
728 views

How do I identify which PC made a suspicious DNS query?

Our IDS detected a suspicious DNS packet going to a Botnet (or similar). Since that DC is a recursive relay, how can we identify the client who made that request. (Windows DNS server)
6
votes
1answer
116 views

How to check which certificate is being checked for revocation?

I have a .net desktop application without a certificate on a network not connected to the Internet When I start it, there is a call to crl.microsoft.com that times out and slows down the application. ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Does enabling EnableLinkedConnections pose a security risk?

As shown Microsoft's TechNet, network shares that are mapped by logon scripts are shared with the standard user access token instead of with the full administrator access token. Here's the gist of it: ...
6
votes
3answers
518 views

Windows netsh pivoting

I am pentesting a windows box to which I have gained system privileges. This box has two network interfaces. I have been able to reach machines on the second interface via the below netsh command. ...
6
votes
0answers
49 views

Can I use disk encryption and track my device at the same time, in case it's stolen or lost?

I would like to encrypt a single user profile but have been told EFS isn't the solution. I have a laptop that I leave in my bag and use for work and private purposes. I want to secure data in case my ...
5
votes
3answers
983 views

Tools helps: First time cracking passwords

I am trying to crack passwords on two Windows member servers (2003 and 2008). There is no Active Directory. Each user seems to use the same password across servers, workstations, etc. I have access to ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Windows 2003 Enterprise infected by Conficker; post-infection problems continue

I used various tools to remove Conficker, and I pretty much succeeded, but I've had recurring problems afterward. It won't update anymore (with the following error message: 0x800706B5) I tried ...
5
votes
6answers
944 views

How can a novice find proof of a system compromise?

I am almost certain a colleague has installed a keylogger on my system. I am totally new to IT security, but have substantial linux / windows / programming experience. The system I believe is ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Can a piece of malware/virus inject itself into an ISO

Let's say that I have an infected PC. I download a copy of the Windows ISO(obviously clean) and burn it to an USB. Is it possible that the malware on my computer can inject itself in this process/ISO ...
5
votes
2answers
382 views

What are the new security features in Windows 10?

Title says it all really. I realise I can Google this, but the top links don't cover all the new features I am aware of, so people will benefit from a canonical answer here.