Questions tagged [boot]

"Booting" is the process of starting up a computer from the OFF state. This tag is for attacks and security measures relating to the startup routine of computer hardware, firmware, or operating systems.

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Understanding Secure Boot

I'm trying to understand the secure boot process of an OS but there are few points I can't wrap my head around. At a high level, afaik, secure boot ensures that the loaded OS is authenticated by its ...
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What is difference running Linux by live USB vs. by VirtualBox?

Can an expert please explain me which of following three methods working with an OS is technically considered more "secure" - and why (pros/cons)? Security I mean aspects like: -preventing any ...
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Why authenticated boot not Secure boot?

Context: Secure boot is one of the important elements of Trusted Computing in computer system. One variety of the Secure boot is authenticated boot. While secure boot prevent the boot of a non trusted ...
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3answers
370 views

Why after dd'ing ISO file to entire USB flash device, only the first partition match the ISO checksum? [closed]

I use dd to "burn" an ISO file to USB stick: dd bs=4M if=/mnt/media/ISO/Fedora-Workstation-Live-x86_64-31-1.9.iso of=/dev/sdd conv=fdatasync status=progress Now I can see several partitions has ...
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TrueCrypt “silently” updated bootloader

I have just updated TrueCrypt from version 7.1a to 7.2. Upon next system restart I have noticed that bootloader was updated as well, because it now shows message about TrueCrypt being not safe. There ...
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217 views

Preventing boot from USB on Dell Inspiron 5559

So what I am looking for is a way to prevent anyone from booting from a USB drive on this specific Dell Inspiron 5559. so normally what I would have to do is to set an Admin password in BIOS that ...
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0answers
43 views

Should I Pursue Platform-Ownership?

the context is this introduction in an HP whitepaper. I'm inquiring about "platform-ownership" within the Secure-Boot environment. I'm looking for a simplified summary of platform-ownership. Much of ...
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1answer
480 views

Requiring hardware key at boot-up on normal laptop

I am sure that a question like this already exists and has probably been answered. I just couldn't find any results (probably due to my inability to word my question correctly). We use laptops at ...
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1answer
106 views

Is it a security concern to publish the current boot_id?

On linux, a machine comes with a machine_id. From the man page, it is said to be considered as "confidential" and must not be exposed to unstrusted parties. Should the boot_id (from /proc/sys/kernel/...
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1answer
184 views

What can a compromised firmware (UEFI) do after the hard-disk has been wiped?

I might be mistaken, but it seems the firmware (UEFI) needs to load some stuff from the disk to be able to do anything really interesting, like loading some advanced tools or loading the OS. Yet ...
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2answers
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USB bootable CD protect against rootkits?

I have a infected computer, which I am trying to diagnose. The attack is probably very sophisticated, and I am not yet sure whether this has happened in the bios, mbr, active partition or any other ...
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2answers
95 views

What program can Decrypt specific a Folder/Files during Windows Boot/Loading? (Windows)

I've been looking into Encryption of my data for some time now; I've decided to move ahead with VeraCrypt for encryption all of my partitions (I have 2 disks in 1 laptop) except for the OS (C:) ...
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1answer
160 views

Why are pins required on boot on devices with fingerprint readers? [duplicate]

Both my iPad and my android phone are configured to allow access via either a pin, or a fingerprint scan. However, immediately after a reboot, neither device allows a fingerprint for the first unlock; ...
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2answers
53 views

Can a laptop be monitored when booted from external drive?

If a laptop is monitored (say from employer) and I boot it from an external USB hard drive or a LIVE-CD/USB-Stick, can it then still be monitored somehow?
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62 views

Security/Privacy OS With Boot On Thumbdrive

I am looking for a security-centered Linux OS that allows you to take the /boot partition on a thumb-drive to alleviate concerns of an Evil Maid Attacks! What OS is it easy to remove the /boot ...
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2answers
180 views

Can malware migrate between OSes on the same machine?

Someone here at work just made an interesting claim; they stated that it's possible for malware, launched in e.g. Windows, to remain in RAM through a reboot and continue working in Linux on the ...
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1answer
626 views

using secure boot in embedded systems

The whole idea about using Secure Boot in Embedded Systems to boot an operating system is new to me. I've never paid much attention to it previously. I just know that it prevents the loading at start-...
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1answer
495 views

Android OS verity signature bypass

I am just getting into custom firmware and rooting phones. I have a phone that appears to be unrootable for whatever reason due to a locked bootloader. The private key was never released and we only ...
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1answer
95 views

Can a Windows program compromise the desktop hardware without giving administrator rights?

If I run a program on a Windows 10 machine, can the program install a virus on an attached USB drive, and can it install a virus into the firmware of the computer to be loaded before the OS/bootloader?...
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702 views

Can dual-boot, encrypted Windows 7 installations be fairly well secured against each other?

We have corporate network where remote workers connect via encrypted latops (Windows 7) using VPN (Cisco AnyConnect client), log into the Windows domain and access their network shares, Outlook e-...
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1answer
175 views

Verifying that the CRTM is read-only for the purpose of trusted computing

When using a TPM to provide integrity measurements for a system via SRTM, the trusted computing base is reduced to only the TPM and CRTM. The CRTM is a component of the BIOS (specifically the ...
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securing Ubuntu bootloader using TPM

I am currently working with Ubuntu 16.04 , with an Intel CPU that supports TPM2 module. I am trying to harden my boot-loader, i tried using trustedgrub2 fork that supports TPM2 , i understand that ...
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Is Secure Boot really Secure?

I found the concept of Secure Boot quite intriguing. I can't say that I know much about it because I don't but I believe I understand the main concept of it. Secure Boot verifies the signature of the ...
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1answer
636 views

Can malware have its own GRUB/boot-loader and use it to be active?

I use Ubuntu 16.04. After I mounted an ISO which may or may not have had malware in it, my system sometimes ends up showing a blank screen after logging into Ubuntu or reboots a minute or two after I ...
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1answer
6k views

Full disk encryption on dual boot system (Truecrypt/Veracrypt)

I am looking to run my laptop system with a dual boot configuration (Fedora + Windows) with full disk encryption. I have a laptop that I will be bringing with me while traveling, both domestically ...
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3answers
677 views

Will converting a MBR disk to GPT, formatting and the converting back to MBR remove a infected boot record.

Will converting a MBR disk to GPT, formatting and the converting back to MBR remove a infected boot record. I am looking into writing a little program that will take a connected USB with a MBR ...
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2answers
813 views

Would it add security to set a GRUB password if HDDs are encrypted and UEFI settings can be opened anyway?

So I'm using Debian 9.1 with KDE and have my hard drives encrypted. Now I'm wondering whether to additionally add a GRUB password as described here. Would that make sense? As the hard drives are ...
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1answer
566 views

System encryption on a uefi system?

I was thinking about encrypting my ssd(just out of curiosity, mostly) and was wondering the possible security threats an unencrypted /boot partition can pose(if any). I know that I can encrypt the ...
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344 views

Android verified boot within the boot sequence

I'm interested in understanding the verified boot process in Android, yet I was unable to find insights about some properties of the process. From what I gathered so far I get that in Android devices ...
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1answer
923 views

Exploiting a Linux startup script that is world writable

What are startup scripts in Linux and what are the steps to exploit startup scripts if they are world writable? I would appreciate if one can explain based on the following two files as example in ...
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1answer
132 views

How does Android prevent me from installing custom system services?

I am trying to understand the secure boot process. Lets say the firmware is locked and only does signed installation of an OS image. This "image" is a compressed bundle of all the binaries needed by ...
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1answer
111 views

Does periodically rebooting secure-boot-enabled devices improve security by preventing persistent compromise?

Many devices now enforce verified/trusted/secure boot, which according to Wikipedia "will only allow signed software to run on the device." Platforms that support this feature include Android, iOS, ...
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501 views

How is hardware based chain of trust implemented in practice for secure boot?

To do secure boot we need an immutable public key baked into the ROM. This key is used to sign the boot loader or the key used to sign the boot loader. I have these questions - Which code does this ...
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543 views

How to launch kali Linux installer inside live version

i need to know how I can launch the kali Linux installer through terminal pleas. Running latest version of kali Linux on LIVE USB. Trouble booting with uefi and so forth so I need to know how to ...
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4answers
17k views

VeraCrypt - Windows boots Automated Repair on UEFI/GPT

OK. So I used VeraCrypt to encrypt the system partition and now Windows boots its automated repair only. After the repair in what I think is Windows Recovery Environment I can choose to boot off USB ...
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1answer
178 views

Should a secure boot process be aware of the peripherals/hardware?

I know the question is rather broad because I am not specifying which hardware and which OS, but that is intentional. I know there should be a root of trust verification in hardware (ROM) before the ...
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1answer
373 views

Windows Secure Boot compromise: are fully-patched PCs vulnerable?

Are fully-patched (as of Aug. 10, 2016) Windows installs vulnerable to allowing self-signed early-boot malware to run- because of this ? If so, which versions of Windows are vulnerable. What in ...
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1answer
100 views

Could a computer turn itself on if the BIOS was modified even if it was turned off by holding the power button down?

My Thinkpad might have been hacked and I know this sounds a little far-fetched, but I suspect the BIOS might have also been hacked. Would turning it off by holding the power button for a few seconds ...
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2answers
809 views

UEFI Firmware integrity measurement

We know that UEFI measures the OS bootloader image integrity every time we power on our computer if secure boot is enabled. With the growing attacks and discoveries of UEFI vulnerabilities, the ...
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1answer
2k views

How are TPMs provisioned for Intel Trusted Execution Environment (TXT)?

For Intel TXT to work, the TPM must be provisioned. Intel provides some tools for doing this but many are protected by non-public login or an NDA. Many OEM platform vendors provision their boards and ...
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1answer
396 views

Boot-sector virus - can it spread only through floppy disks?

Do boot-sector viruses spread only through floppy discs, and so are the thing of the past, or can they spread through USB, removable hard drives etc? Techopedia states: The propagation of boot ...
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4answers
395 views

Is a computer more vulnerable if wireless is left on when booting?

Normally I switch off wireless on my laptop before I shut it down but I forgot to do this last night. So this morning, after I booted up the laptop, I saw the wireless notification on the bottom right ...
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1answer
274 views

How to find out if my MBR has Evil Maid code?

If Truecrypt Bootloader will remain visually the same, how can I find out if it was infected?
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1answer
359 views

How do boot-sector viruses propagate?

I'm doing research on various malware and I came across boot-sector viruses. Kaspersky states that "they are not designed to infect removable media." My question is, how do they spread then? Again ...
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2answers
371 views

How can I prevent booting from media devices?

first of all, I deeply apologise because of my silly question. The thing is that I am learning about hardening. I have VMware workstation 12, and I've created a VM CentOS 7 machine (to be integrated ...
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2answers
1k views

Best way to make a Linux install tamper proof

Good day, I am currently planning an environment where it comes down to the biggest security risk being to boot to another environment and tamper with the install on the disk (Older PCs with physical ...
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1answer
724 views

Android Rooting and Evil Maid Attacks

I'm trying to learn more about full disk encryption (in the context of a Linux based server) and what schemes offer true security and which only offer the illusion of security. As I understand it, ...
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1answer
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anti cloning hard disk [closed]

I'm trying to create an "anti-cloning" system. I'd like to know if there's a way to check a unique label on the hard disk, during the boot phase, in order to avoid the machine to continue booting if ...
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1answer
1k views

Is TPM ownership required for secure boot or measured boot?

I know: Secure Boot - can use the TPM Measured Boot - must use the TPM Can anyone intimately familiar with these processes explain if any TPM owner-authorized commands are required or used in these ...
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1answer
973 views

tpm sealing and secure boot

I have worked with TPM for a while, and I'm interested in some of its features. Especially sealing and the use of TPM's PCRs in the secure boot process. My question is: What is stopping an attacker ...