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Old 05-02-2012, 12:59 AM
stan
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

http://web.mit.edu/press/2012/thwarting-eavesdropping-data.html

The above is a link to an article on a security threat called side
channel attack. I don't completely understand how it can work, as the
description is somewhat vague. But obviously some very intelligent
people can understand it, and can make it work. If someone is familiar
with this area and could give a more detailed description, I'd
appreciate it.

The main question, though; is Fedora vulnerable to this sort of
attack? It sounds like it is a combination of hardware and software
usage patterns that create the vulnerability, so do things like
randomized heap make this impossible?

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Old 05-02-2012, 01:04 AM
Ed Greshko
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On 05/02/2012 08:59 AM, stan wrote:
> http://web.mit.edu/press/2012/thwarting-eavesdropping-data.html
>
> The above is a link to an article on a security threat called side
> channel attack. I don't completely understand how it can work, as the
> description is somewhat vague. But obviously some very intelligent
> people can understand it, and can make it work. If someone is familiar
> with this area and could give a more detailed description, I'd
> appreciate it.
>
> The main question, though; is Fedora vulnerable to this sort of
> attack? It sounds like it is a combination of hardware and software
> usage patterns that create the vulnerability, so do things like
> randomized heap make this impossible?
>

"Smart cautions, however, that the work of Goldwasser and her colleagues is unlikely
to yield practical applications in the near future. “In security, and especially
cryptography, it takes a long time to go from an academic idea to something that’s
actually used in the real world,” Smart says. “They’re looking at what could be
possible in 10, 20 years’ time.”

I'm not going to spend any time on this....and even if I did it would yield the same
results as my speculating on how to improve brain surgery. :-) :-)

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of the century. -- Dame Edna Everage
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Old 05-02-2012, 01:29 AM
stan
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On Wed, 02 May 2012 09:04:27 +0800
Ed Greshko <Ed.Greshko@greshko.com> wrote:

> "Smart cautions, however, that the work of Goldwasser and her
> colleagues is unlikely to yield practical applications in the near
> future. “In security, and especially cryptography, it takes a long
> time to go from an academic idea to something that’s actually used in
> the real world,” Smart says. “They’re looking at what could be
> possible in 10, 20 years’ time.”
>
> I'm not going to spend any time on this....and even if I did it would
> yield the same results as my speculating on how to improve brain
> surgery. :-) :-)
>

I interpreted that as meaning the defense against the attack was 10 to
20 years out there. The attack has already been demonstrated, from the
sound of the article (I did go read the first link, which described
attacks targeting cloud servers at least somewhat successfully).

Like you, I'm not going to be contributing to this effort. But if
Fedora is already immune, it is one less thing to worry about. If it
isn't immune, worst case someone could package a useful program that
does a side channel attack in addition to its principle function, and
calls home at some point with the payload. The principle threat seems
to be that it can find passwords because of patterns in encryption
algorithms, with no more than legitimate execute permissions.
Admittedly, this is a remote possibility in open source.
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Old 05-02-2012, 01:36 AM
Ed Greshko
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On 05/02/2012 09:29 AM, stan wrote:
> I interpreted that as meaning the defense against the attack was 10 to
> 20 years out there. The attack has already been demonstrated, from the
> sound of the article (I did go read the first link, which described
> attacks targeting cloud servers at least somewhat successfully).
>
> Like you, I'm not going to be contributing to this effort. But if
> Fedora is already immune, it is one less thing to worry about.

If, as you say, "the defense against the attack was 10 to 20 years out there" then by
Boolean logic Fedora *cannot* be "already immune".

I think you should continue to worry. :-) :-)

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of the century. -- Dame Edna Everage
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Old 05-02-2012, 01:54 AM
stan
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On Wed, 02 May 2012 09:36:25 +0800
Ed Greshko <Ed.Greshko@greshko.com> wrote:

> If, as you say, "the defense against the attack was 10 to 20 years
> out there" then by Boolean logic Fedora *cannot* be "already immune".
>
> I think you should continue to worry. :-) :-)
>

Thanks. :-) I'll put this on the list right above the worry that an
asteroid will hit the earth. And just under the fact that we are
overdue for an ice age. ;-) What if Fedora has natural immunity? I was
wondering, if like so many other computer things, this was principally
a Windows problem, because of Window's design. The theoretical method
described in the article is just one way of defending against it.
Apparently, Intel modified their hardware in part to increase the
difficulty of this kind of attack.
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:26 AM
Michael Hennebry
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On Tue, 1 May 2012, stan wrote:


On Wed, 02 May 2012 09:36:25 +0800
Ed Greshko <Ed.Greshko@greshko.com> wrote:


If, as you say, "the defense against the attack was 10 to 20 years
out there" then by Boolean logic Fedora *cannot* be "already immune".

I think you should continue to worry. :-) :-)



Thanks. :-) I'll put this on the list right above the worry that an
asteroid will hit the earth. And just under the fact that we are
overdue for an ice age. ;-) What if Fedora has natural immunity? I was


Does that mean that you will worry about it
before worrying about dying of lightning?


wondering, if like so many other computer things, this was principally
a Windows problem, because of Window's design. The theoretical method


Wence that conclusion?


described in the article is just one way of defending against it.
Apparently, Intel modified their hardware in part to increase the
difficulty of this kind of attack.


--
Michael hennebry@web.cs.ndsu.NoDak.edu
"On Monday, I'm gonna have to tell my kindergarten class,
whom I teach not to run with scissors,
that my fiance ran me through with a broadsword." -- Lily
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Old 05-02-2012, 08:25 AM
Edward M
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On 05/01/2012 05:59 PM, stan wrote:

The main question, though; is Fedora vulnerable to this sort of
attack? It sounds like it is a combination of hardware and software
usage patterns that create the vulnerability, so do things like
randomized heap make this impossible?


To be completely save one has to completely cover their computer,
internet cable, modem,router, the electrical wires which the
computer is connected too, in tin foil.l so there is no
electromagnetic leak of any sort and install OpenBSD.

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Old 05-02-2012, 08:34 AM
"Arthur Dent"
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

> On 05/01/2012 05:59 PM, stan wrote:
>> The main question, though; is Fedora vulnerable to this sort of
>> attack? It sounds like it is a combination of hardware and software
>> usage patterns that create the vulnerability, so do things like
>> randomized heap make this impossible?
>
> To be completely save one has to completely cover their computer,
> internet cable, modem,router, the electrical wires which the
> computer is connected too, in tin foil.l so there is no
> electromagnetic leak of any sort and install OpenBSD.

Well that, and of course you need to wear a similar tin foil hat on your
head while using the computer because, as everyone knows, your brainwave
patterns are vulnerable to the scanning devices that all Western
intelligence agencies use routinely...


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Old 05-02-2012, 08:36 AM
Ed Greshko
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On 05/02/2012 04:25 PM, Edward M wrote:
> To be completely save one has to completely cover their computer, internet cable,
> modem,router, the electrical wires which the
> computer is connected too, in tin foil.l so there is no electromagnetic leak of
> any sort and install OpenBSD.

I disagree....

To be *completely safe* one must keep the male end of the computer's power plug a
minimum of 5.6 inches/14.2 cm from the mains outlet, after removing any and all
batteries from the computer.

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of the century. -- Dame Edna Everage
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Old 05-02-2012, 09:30 AM
Roger
 
Default OT: Security threat from side channel attacks, linux vulnerable?

On 05/02/2012 06:34 PM, Arthur Dent wrote:

On 05/01/2012 05:59 PM, stan wrote:

The main question, though; is Fedora vulnerable to this sort of
attack? It sounds like it is a combination of hardware and software
usage patterns that create the vulnerability, so do things like
randomized heap make this impossible?

To be completely save one has to completely cover their computer,
internet cable, modem,router, the electrical wires which the
computer is connected too, in tin foil.l so there is no
electromagnetic leak of any sort and install OpenBSD.

Well that, and of course you need to wear a similar tin foil hat on your
head while using the computer because, as everyone knows, your brainwave
patterns are vulnerable to the scanning devices that all Western
intelligence agencies use routinely...



This is plainly wrong.......
The same was suggested when I asked about electromagnetic static from
overhead wires some time ago.
Aluminium foil works like the aluminium rotor in your electricity metre
- things turn around uncontrollably.
I wore full aluminium foil head gear as recommended, and full aluminium
foil body suit and got rotated while driving the bus. Not nice, although
the kids loved the sparkly blue glow.

Roger

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