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3

Mints97's answer is great, but I think there may be more to it than that. An especially wonderful (read: terrible) problem with Windows is that it supports complete Unicode character set in filenames, including (and this is the worst), U-202E. While I am sure it has some good innocuous uses, but it can allow people to maliciously change the filename in a ...


0

There was a widely publicized exploit a few years ago, which used a bug in a particular, widely distributed jpeg library. The net effect of this exploit was to allow executing arbitrary code on the victims machine, when nominally all they were doing was trying to view an image. Also, for example, there was an exploit for rich text files (rtf format) which ...


0

I remember back in the good old days when viewing or loading a .ico file with the api's that shipped with windows used to allow for direct code execution if crafted maliciously enough. And the entire concept behind the wmf file format was calling graphics routines directly . ( hence the creation of the device independent bitmap format, aka .bmp files ) So ...


0

Well you start up with analyzing the file format. And then take a while guess on how different software will react. For example JPEG - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/JPEG - uses special markers to delimit the start and end of image. Now one would bet that software that deals with JPEG will only look for the start and end of image markers and plot everything ...


28

The answer is simple. That was not a photo. And .pif is not an image format. Count on NYTimes to provide correct technical info. As the log on NYTimes's article says, and as FireEye's actual report confirms, the file used was a .pif file. It's one of the less known of Windows's executable file extensions. .pif is legacy from MS-DOS, like .com. It's ...


2

You wrote, "The image file format was pif", but the article states "FireEye researchers found a collection of chats and documents while researching malware hidden in PDF documents." The program information file format was used on Microsoft Windows systems, though files in that format are rarer now than they once were. There were vulnerabilities associated ...


9

Nothing is perfect, and a common kind of bug is a buffer overflow, where in short data gets copied where it shouldn't be, and in some cases this can lead to arbitrary code being executed. For example here is a bug in old Microsoft versions in which if you viewed a certain image with IE than arbitrary code could be executed. Note that this is very ...


0

The only use case for steganographic in a open channel such as facebook or reddit(by extention imgur) would be to hide data in posted images as a convert channel. Hidden messages in clear text is not posible because of web application firewalls and other filtering strategies. Even then that is not a good use of these sites since Facebook for example is ...


0

First and foremost, all facebook messages are maintained and are not deleted in the event that you delete your profile. For steg. to be useful, multi-vector communication is necessary. For instance, Alice wants Bob to decrypt a message in picture P. Therefore Alice messages Bob through Facebook IM that P has been delivered privately to Bob's facebook ...


1

Steganography is used to hide messages in plain sight. This is useful to do exactly what you say, "so that no one suspects the message to contain secrets and tries to crack the message." You suggest that private messages could be used, but that violates the use case for Steg: a private message means that it is known that 2 parties communicated and is ...


-1

Stetanography is by design wrong approach as it's simply "security by obscurity". This is by all means insufficient for "proper security", but it still can help a lot. I think stetanography still has it's place in delivering secure messages, but the messages hidden in the media should be definitely encrypted prior to hiding them. Stetanography is so ...



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