Suggested Blog Reading – Thursday/Friday July 19th/20th, 2007

ReadI was so swamped at work yesterday that by the time I got home I was exhausted. Needless to say I didn’t get a chance to post a Suggested Blog Reading (SBR) post so I’ll combine them today. Enjoy your weekends!

Here’s the list:

Secure browsing with Squid and SSH – Not anything new but a good refresher for those looking to browser securely and for those looking to detect such activities 😉

Public areas that offer access to the Internet (airports, open wireless networks etc.) have no security in place. If you’re at a public WiFi spot, your personal information can be sniffed by other malicious users. This hack will show you a way to secure your web browser when using public networks.

In a nutshell, we’re going to setup a proxy server (Squid) on a trusted SSH server and create a secure connection from our laptop, over a public network to a secure remote server. We’ll tell the browser to use the secure SSH tunnel as a HTTP proxy.

Musings on 100% Log Collection – I’ve always agreed with Anton on collecting as much log data as you can in order to get a full view of what is happening. You wouldn’t pay a security guard to close his eyes and take 20 minute naps during his shift would you?

One of the most exciting, complicated and at the same time very common questions from the field of log management is the “what logs to collect?” question (this, BTW, implies that logs not collected will be left to rot wherever they were generated and thus might or might not be available at the time of dire need. You are collecting logs, aren’t you?). This comes up during compliance-driven log management projects (in the form of “what to collect for PCI DSS compliance?”) as well as operationally-driven (in the form of “what logs from this application do I need to detect faults and errors?”) or security-driven log management projects (in the form of “which logs will help me during the incident response?”)

FTester – Firewall Tester and IDS Testing tool – Another tool to check out.

The Firewall Tester (FTester) is a tool designed for testing firewalls filtering policies and Intrusion Detection System (IDS) capabilities.

The tool consists of two perl scripts, a packet injector (ftest) and the listening sniffer (ftestd). The first script injects custom packets, defined in ftest.conf, with a signature in the data part while the sniffer listens for such marked packets. The scripts both write a log file which is in the same form for both scripts. A diff of the two produced files (ftest.log and ftestd.log) shows the packets that were unable to reach the sniffer due to filtering rules if these two scripts are ran on hosts placed on two different sides of a firewall. Stateful inspection firewalls are handled with the ‘connection spoofing’ option. A script called freport is also available for automatically parse the log files.

Web Page Exposes Purdue Student Information – Here’s an “eye bleeder” for you.

Purdue University is apologizing to students after it discovered a web page containing student information was available on the Internet. This page, containing the names and Social Security numbers of 50 students, was discovered during a routine review of the Purdue web space. The individuals affected by this incident involve those students enrolled in the university’s industrial engineering 500-level course between spring 2002 and fall 2004. Purdue has already mailed out letters to those affected students, but has setup a hotline – 866-605-0013 – and a web site – – to help answer any questions students have about the incident.

Nearly Ten Percent of Companies Have Fired Bloggers, Survey Claims – Uh oh!

Nearly ten percent of companies have fired an employee for violating corporate blogging or message board policies, and 19 percent have disciplined an employee for the same infractions, according to a new survey from Proofpoint, a messaging security company.

Almost a third of companies “employ staff to read or otherwise analyze outbound email,” while more than fifteen percent have hired people whose primary function is to spy on outgoing corporate email. A quarter have fired an employee for violating corporate email policies. Twenty percent of the companies and almost thirty percent of companies with more than 20,000 employees had been ordered by a court or a regulator to turn over employee emails.

Learn to use Metasploit – Tutorials, Docs & Videos – Good link to check out.

Metasploit is a great tool, but it’s not the easiest to use and some people get completely lost when trying to get the most out of it.

To help you guys out here is a bunch of links, videos, tutorials and documents to get you up to speed.

You can start with this, a good flash tutorial that shows you step by step how to use it

Nessus 3.2 BETA — Example ‘nessuscmd’ usage – I may have to give this a shot this weekend. I haven’t had a chance to test the beta yet.

The BETA of Nessus 3.2 includes support for a new command line method to invoke quick Nessus scans. This blog entry details some interesting examples for port scanning, operating system identification, testing of a certain bug and testing Windows and UNIX credentials using the nessuscmd tool.

Scroll to top