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Questions tagged [operating-systems]

The operating system is the software component that provides abstraction of physical hardware, and provides a generalized model for application software to execute without the need for specific hardware knowledge. Questions on the topic of operating system security should use this tag; you may also like to use [tag:windows], [tag:linux] or [tag:mac-osx]

64
votes
4answers
9k views

Is an up-to-date browser secure on an out-of-date OS?

Windows 7 support will end on January 14, 2020. Assuming that after that day I still use an updated browser, is it true that I'm still safe? Can it "patch" the OS-based security holes? Minor question:...
92
votes
9answers
20k views

Can a virus destroy the BIOS of a modern computer?

In the late 1990s, a computer virus known as CIH began infecting some computers. Its payload, when triggered, overwrote system information and destroyed the computer's BIOS, essentially bricking ...
0
votes
0answers
4 views

How do I save Windows 10 to a USB drive? [migrated]

I have bought Windows 10, and have it running on my computer. However, I would like to try other operating systems and explore the computer outside any operating system, and uninstall Win10 for a ...
1
vote
2answers
201 views

Are the CPU protection rings meant to protect against malicious programs or against unintentional programming mistakes?

I am trying to understand what is the purpose of the CPU protection rings (specifically user mode and kernel mode). I don't think that the CPU protection rings are meant to protect against malicious ...
0
votes
3answers
149 views

Can you detect that new files were added to a hard drive that was removed and replaced?

The internal HDD was removed from my laptop (with Windows 7) and connected to another machine to tamper with. Some new files were also created/copied by the mischief maker. After the tampering was ...
6
votes
1answer
174 views

How can I find a web application's document root using a path traversal vulnerability?

I am performing a penetration testing on an application hosted on an Ubuntu environment. So using a path traversal vulnerability, I can download any file. The API web application runs as root (...
-1
votes
2answers
100 views

How can I ensure that I can trust to OS?

How can I ensure that some OS can be trusted? I'm not speaking about possible security problems which can happen everywhere but about something like a backdoor left by a developer. Can such a thing ...
1
vote
0answers
42 views

How to do forensis MBR hex dump?

I take OS first 512 hexdump using dd command. what kind of information extract using that and what are the tools or command(linux) can be used for analysis ? I take copy bytes dump using my Ubuntu ...
0
votes
1answer
73 views

What are the security implications if systemd is not restarted after it has been updated?

My understanding is that systemd is the parent process for all other processes running on Linux. If systemd has been updated on production devices such as servers and the service is not restarted, ...
0
votes
1answer
43 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
399 views

Qubes OS or TENS for security? Is Qubes a good idea for a total beginner? [closed]

What would be the most appropriate to use for as much security as possible? TENS looks very simple and straightforward, which is why I like it. However I have barely seen anyone suggesting it, I ...
2
votes
1answer
448 views

Is there a multi-layered DoS protection which can be tightly integrated with cloud hosting services?

I know that one can deny services (DoS) in any of the 7 layers of the OSI model and that in principle, a denial can be done by a single entity (human or machine) or from 2 or more such entities ("...
1
vote
2answers
124 views

If C uses shared libraries, is it possible to write a program that will modify the code that opens a file

If C uses shared libraries, is it possible to write a program that will modify the fopen function to execute a malicious code? How can the OS protect the user from this?
-1
votes
1answer
208 views

Explain how a BIOS/UEFI infection may compromise the security of the Operating System [closed]

Explain how a BIOS/UEFI infection may compromise the security of the Operating System.
3
votes
1answer
109 views

How to enforce on the OS level to recognise only certain keyboards

I give employees AES wireless keyboards. I would like to enforce the OS to only recognise the keyboard we supply. Is that possible? Assuming my employees OS are Windows 10, Ubuntu, Mac OSX. How could ...
0
votes
2answers
102 views

Risk of infecting the host OS if the guest OS is out of date [duplicate]

I'd like to know how much the risk changes if I don't update the software on the guest OS in a VM (applications and the guest operating system itself), compared to the risk in case it's all kept up-to-...
0
votes
3answers
73 views

Can Windows take data from other OS running on same hardware?

I am looking for the way how to set up the my environments as I need more than one OS at once. I care about privacy and securities the most, that is my priority. But I can't refuse Windows in full. ...
0
votes
0answers
132 views

Are running systems more susceptible than shut-down systems?

Suppose an attacker gained physical access to a device (a smartphone, for example). Would be be harder for the attacker to perform malicious actions on the phone when the phone is shut down? I’m ...
1
vote
2answers
64 views

Is it possible to restrict clipboard access to specific processes?

I'm not sure if somebody has implemented this before, but I think it'd be helpful if we can make certain clipboard messages only available to specific processes if they are not meant to be public. Is ...
1
vote
2answers
349 views

How protected mode in CPU is really implemented?

I know what is real and protected mode of cpu execution. But how CPU implements protected mode ? AFAIK cpu does everything what the program says it to do. Where is the protected mode behaviour ...
1
vote
3answers
269 views

Can BIOS/UEFI change OS code?

I know that the OS is the boss of programs (once OS is loaded). Is BIOS/UEFI the boss of the everything before OS is loaded? Can an OS be a sitting duck for any BIOS/UEFI related malware? In other ...
-1
votes
1answer
138 views

Best book for learning information security [closed]

What is the best book(s) on the market right now for mastering network security. In other words, what are the best materials out right now to learn hacking/protecting operating systems and software.
3
votes
2answers
347 views

How do hackers find vulnerabilities in closed source operating systems?

I'm not planning on hacking anything, but I'm just wondering how hackers find vulnerabilities in closed source operating systems such as Windows, since they don't know exactly what the code is doing? ...
-1
votes
1answer
94 views

Does Windows perform TCP and/or UDP port scans? [closed]

I want to know whether Windows Operating System does TCP/UDP port scans, and how often if it does? Thanks for your time.
1
vote
1answer
40 views

Can request from different software on same machine to a server be identified to be from same origin by tracking TLS handshakes?

If two different users visit an website from two different browsers via HTTPS, can they be identified by the server to be from same origin (same client machine) using information available from TLS ...
4
votes
2answers
268 views

When running shell scripts, is it safer to pass sensitive information using stdin or as a string option?

I'm building a number of automated scripts that will run within an encrypted environment (full disk encryption). Many commands in both Windows and *nix have two ways of entering sensitive information ...
1
vote
1answer
124 views

Preventing OS fingerprinting

I am working on a project and I need to hide my Linux OS from nmap or other OS identification tools. I read many articles about TCP/IP stack and changed many properties such as TTL and packet size but ...
2
votes
3answers
187 views

Is it possible to check if a USB's firmware is unmodified when plugged in?

Let's say I have some USB stick that I know and trust. I can examine the firmware and generate a checksum for it. Can I use this checksem to ensure that when the USB is next plugged in the firmware ...
4
votes
2answers
360 views

How can Linux be secure if it allows for open source contributions from the public?

From my brief understanding of Linux, developers from around the globe submit code to be included into a Linux update. It's then reviewed by security administrators. When approved, it's passed onto ...
11
votes
2answers
918 views

What are the criteria to choose a secure operating system?

Let's say I have a new and empty desktop or laptop computer and I want to decide which operating system to use. I plan to use this computer in a small home LAN with internet access. There are other ...
3
votes
2answers
159 views

Turing-completeness impact on system security

I always find in many papers discussing different kind of system security subject that the authors always trying to highlight the danger of some vulnerabilities by assuming an attacker, by exploiting ...
0
votes
1answer
93 views

Username visibility on network

People in the security world recommend changing the hostname of a computer to something that is not connected to the user. For example: "don't name it: MacbookPro Erica." This way IT staff and '...
1
vote
1answer
224 views

Install Metasploitable on PC [closed]

I am a teacher giving pentesting classes and I have a group of students that I have been teaching for 4 years now. I would like to make a little "hacking contest" in which there is a vulnerable ...
-1
votes
1answer
149 views

How can I protect my cloud processing from everyone … even those with root access?

How can I run my top secret code and data on any cloud hosting provider such that everyone even the hosting vendor with root is denied access ? ... a research proposal What is the current state of ...
6
votes
1answer
249 views

Do any non-GNU/Linux display managers provide the same isolation as Wayland?

In discussions around the ongoing transition from X.org to Wayland, I regularly come across comments along the lines of "Linux security is not there yet". This refers to Wayland's promise of better (...
0
votes
1answer
112 views

how may I see if a .iso file is original (to avoid security troubles)?

I bought a license key for Windows Enterprise on eBay. The seller sent me a .iso file (Windows Enterprise cannot be downloaded from the Microsoft website directly). He told me he sent a version of ...
3
votes
1answer
217 views

Is it possible data which was generated with JavaScript in Google Chrome could exist in my Mac'sRAM?

I generated a private key using this website: https://www.stellar.org/account-viewer/#!/ I was supposed to write down the private key but I didn't and I lost it. I have since unplugged the internet ...
0
votes
3answers
287 views

Degree of safety of an unencrypted hard-drive and the general theory behind it

I always thought that everything on computer hard-disk is encrypted which can only be read(and understood) after passing my username and password to decrypt it. However, this is clearly not the case. ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is accessing kernel memory a security risk?

A lot of the news regarding the Meltdown vulnerability is emphasizing that it allows programs to read memory that should be off limits to the user. While I understand that this should not happen, few ...
0
votes
0answers
42 views

How can third-party VPN applications tunnel all traffic of all processes on sandboxed operating systems?

How can (third-party) VPN applications tunnel all communication of all processes on sandboxed operating systems (such as OSX, etc)? Can they access the traffic of other apps and redirect them? Why is ...
14
votes
3answers
5k views

How do I hide the OS I am using from internet sites?

I am currently trying to mask the OS system I am using from the websites I visit. I'm doing this for an added layer of security. How would I go about hiding the OS from websites?
1
vote
1answer
145 views

Can we stop aimbots by introducing a “Protected Input Path” that ensures that mouse input really comes from the mouse?

When playing First Person Shooters online it's possible to stumble on opponents using aimbots. They are really a plague, and I was wondering whether there is anything that can be done to block them. ...
0
votes
5answers
195 views

Are software vulnerabilities limitless?

Ok. I believe no one has thought of this perspective, so here goes. I really don't understand why software need to be constantly patch for security when programmers do a good and complete job in the ...
1
vote
1answer
446 views

XSS attack on to get root priveleges

Is there any way of execute an xss attack inside a Linux machine to get to sudo mode? I know Linux is designed to separate the two types of user. I guess, i don't really know but I guess diferent ...
0
votes
1answer
60 views

Do privacy settings guarantee privacy?

In Windows 10 and many other proprietary operating systems, you can "seemingly" opt out of sending usage data. However, if the operating system is proprietary, how can we be sure that the OS is not ...
4
votes
2answers
5k views

What are the technical reasons for Tails requiring 2 USB sticks to install?

In the Tails documentation there is something I find strange. They say that creating a live USB stick that will contain the Tails OS must be done in a two step process. This is true of most platforms -...
45
votes
12answers
8k views

Would it be more secure or not if all computers in the network use the same operating system?

If all the computers use the same operating system, attackers only need to focus on one operating system, would it be unsafe?
12
votes
1answer
1k views

How can Process Hacker view my password manager's memory without administrative rights?

I use Process Hacker as a replacement for Window's Task Manager on my computer. While looking at the various information available about a selected process, I found the Memory tab. I figured this was ...
8
votes
2answers
3k views

How SS7 attack first enter into SS7 network?

I've read the following article about SS7 attack: https://berlin.ccc.de/~tobias/31c3-ss7-locate-track-manipulate.pdf I have some questions about this kind of attack: Is SS7 attack can be done ...
1
vote
2answers
272 views

Where am I most vulnerable when running Mac OS 10.6.8 Snow Leopard?

I have a challenge at work, one of our computers is running Mac OS 10.6.8 Snow Leopard. We have legacy software that's required to run the business, and so we have to have it online and on our network....