Content related to computer security., i.e. content about policies, mechanisms, etc. needed make sure data is not leaked or corrupted and services available in all circumstances.

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86
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3answers
3k views

Security implications of forgetting to quote a variable in bash/POSIX shells

If you've been following unix.stackexchange.com for a while, you should hopefully know by now that leaving a variable unquoted in list context (as in echo $var) in Bourne/POSIX shells (zsh being the ...
107
votes
7answers
69k views

Allow setuid on shell scripts

The setuid permission bit tells Linux to run a program with the effective user id of the owner instead of the executor: > cat setuid-test.c #include <stdio.h> #include <unistd.h> int ...
108
votes
2answers
18k views

When was the shellshock (CVE-2014-6271/7169) bug introduced, and what is the patch that fully fixes it?

Some context about the bug: CVE-2014-6271 Bash supports exporting not just shell variables, but also shell functions to other bash instances, via the process environment to (indirect) child ...
60
votes
3answers
15k views

Why is there a big delay after entering a wrong password?

I notice a weird (well, according to me) thing about passwords. For example, if I type an incorrect password during login, there will be a few seconds' delay before the system tells me so. When I try ...
35
votes
4answers
124k views

SSH login with clear text password as a parameter? [duplicate]

I need to login to a user that I've created on a remote host running Ubuntu. I can't use an ssh key because the ssh login will happen from a bash script ran within a server that I won't have access to ...
101
votes
8answers
18k views

Which is the safest way to get root privileges: sudo, su or login?

I would like to have the root account in safety even if my unprivileged user is compromised. On Ubuntu you can only use sudo for "security reasons" by default. However I am not sure it is any safer ...
14
votes
10answers
2k views

Concern about logging in as root overrated?

For personal linux on my personal notebooks, I've usually set my environment to autologin as root even under X or lower runlevels. I've found my workflow is very pleasant and fast, without any ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Hide processes from other users based on groups (under Linux)?

Is it possible to configure process hiding for certain user groups under a linux system? For example: Users from group X should not see processes owned by users from group Y in ps/top or under /proc. ...
122
votes
9answers
13k views

The myths about malware in Unix / Linux

Is it possible for my Linux box to become infected with a malware? I haven't heard of it happening to anyone I know, and I've heard quite a few times that it isn't possible. Is that true? If so, ...
17
votes
2answers
949 views

Security implications of running perl -ne '…' *

Apparently, running: perl -n -e 'some perl code' * Or find . ... -exec perl -n -e '...' {} + (same with -p instead of -n) Or perl -e 'some code using <>' * often found in one-liners ...
5
votes
1answer
801 views

What should I check after an unauthorized access?

I accidentally left an open port on my router, leaving access to one of my computers via SSH, using a rather insecure password. I noticed because I checked /var/log/auth.log and there is just one ...
71
votes
8answers
79k views

What's the difference between /sbin/nologin and /bin/false

Technically, unless pam is set up to check your shell with pam_shells neither of these can actually prevent your login, if you're not on the shell. On my system they are even different sizes, so I ...
51
votes
4answers
7k views

Is there any way to keep a command from being added to your history?

Is there any way to keep a command from being added to your history? I have a command that I want to keep out of my history file, and I really don't care to have it there when I search the history ...
18
votes
7answers
15k views

Can root/superuser read my read-protected files?

On shared unix hosting, if I have a file sensitive-data.txt and I issue: chmod 600 sensitive-data.txt Can root user still read my file? Specifically I'm wondering if it's safe to store my password ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

Log every invocation of every SUID program?

I would like to have a log file that contains an entry for every time a user runs any suid program, containing the user name, the program and any command line arguments passed to it. Is there a ...
85
votes
3answers
19k views

How do I recover from the Heartbleed bug in OpenSSL?

CVE-2014-0160 a.k.a. Heartbleed is a vulnerability in OpenSSL. It looks scary. How do I determine whether I am affected? If I'm affected, what do I need to do? Apparently upgrading isn't enough.
64
votes
20answers
11k views

Root access that can't change root password?

We are having a little problem on a server. We want that some users should be able to do e.g. sudo and become root, but with the restriction that the user can't change root password. That is, a ...
21
votes
5answers
13k views

Block Particular Command in Linux for Specific user

How to block command, let say mkdir for specific user ? What I did just created read-only function and store in users profile ~/.bashrc /bin/mkdir() { echo "mkdir command not allow for you" ...
24
votes
6answers
31k views

How do I recursively shred an entire directory tree?

I have a directory tree that I would like to shred with the Linux 'shred' utility. Unfortunately, shred has no -R option for recursive shredding. How can I shred an entire directory tree ...
1
vote
2answers
369 views

Editing my /etc/hosts.deny

I'm being trolled by China, and don't know why I can't block their request to my server. //host.deny ALL: item.taobao.com ALL: 117.25.128.* But when I watch the error log on my webserver tail -f /...
2
votes
2answers
605 views

How can I ssh to a remote server with an automated password and no key?

I have a remote server. I planned to use public keys to connect over ssh without typing the password but the remote system rejects public key authentication. So what is the best way to do it? What ...
11
votes
2answers
13k views

How can you log every command typed

How can you log every command someone has entered into the shell? I'm asking on both the basis of protecting yourself if you are logged into someone else's server and something breaks, or if someone ...
18
votes
2answers
6k views

What to use to harden Linux box? Apparmor, SELinux, grsecurity, SMACK, chroot?

I am planning to go back to Linux as a Desktop machine. I would like to make it more secure. And try a few hardening techniques, especially since I plan to get my own server. What would be a good, ...
22
votes
3answers
7k views

Why does the 'bin' user need a login shell?

During an audit of /var/log/auth.log on one of my public webservers, I found this: Jan 10 03:38:11 Bucksnort sshd[3571]: pam_unix(sshd:auth): authentication failure; logname= uid=0 euid=0 tty=...
15
votes
5answers
1k views

Monitoring activity on my computer.

So recently I found that someone has been using my computer without consent, browsing folders, etc.... I could change all my passwords straight away, but I'm curious as the what the intruding party ...
27
votes
3answers
14k views

How can I determine if someone's SSH key contains an empty passphrase?

Some of my Linux & FreeBSD systems have dozens of users. Staff will use these "ssh gateway" nodes to SSH into other internal servers. We're concerned that some of these people use an unencrypted ...
7
votes
1answer
6k views

How to get Oracle java 7 to work with setcap cap_net_bind_service+ep

I am trying to grant the java executable the right to open ports below 1024 on Linux. Here is the setup /home/test/java contains the Oracle Server JRE 7.0.25 CentOS 6.4 Here is what getcap ...
9
votes
1answer
284 views

Security Implications of using unsanitized data in Shell Arithmetic evaluation

In a comment to a recent question, St├ęphane Chazelas mentions that there are security implications to double parentheses arithmetic such as: x=$((1-$x)) on most shells. My Google skills seem to be ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

I don't want other users see my processes in ps aux. I have root. It's Debian. How to use grsec?

I installed 'linux-patch-grsecurity2' and it has some sort of interface. ~$ sudo gradm2 gradm 2.1.14 grsecurity administration program Usage: gradm [option] ... Examples: gradm -P ...
5
votes
1answer
165 views

How does the kernel prevent a malicious program from reading all of physical RAM?

If I write a program that tries to read memory at every possible address, and I run it on a "full" Unix, it will not be able to access all of the physical RAM. But how does the operating system ...
5
votes
1answer
250 views

Is it safe for my ssh user to be given passwordless sudo for `apt-get update` and `apt-get upgrade`?

I have an SSH standard user account on my personal server, and it has sudo access (via its password). I ssh in using a public key, so I don't have to type in the account password to log in. Is it ...
5
votes
1answer
471 views

Automated ssh login with passphrase?

Logging onto a machine over ssh typically requires a password to be entered before access is granted. Alternatively, a key/certificate (without a passphrase) can be installed onto the remote machine ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Securely feeding a program with a password

After understanding the problem with using a password in the command line, I need to find a way of feeding a program with a password without it being a problem (without the password being recorded ...
2
votes
1answer
447 views

Debian unstable chroot security issues

This page describes how you can use the debootstrap utility to install a base Debian unstable/sid system on an existing Linux machine. The new install is accessible using chroot. When doing this, ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

wpa_supplicant store password as hash (WPA-EAP with phase2=“auth=PAP”)

Is there a way to store my password in /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf as some hash instead of plaintext? By "password" I refer here to the password used for phase2 authentification. I do not ...
31
votes
2answers
89k views

What user should apache and PHP be running as? What permissions should /var/www files have?

I just spun up an Ubuntu 11.10 box and then ran apt-get install apache2 php5 to install apache2 and PHP 5 on the box. Now it is functioning as a "web server" and it loads the "It Works!" page. Now I'm ...
53
votes
4answers
13k views

Why is root login via SSH so bad that everyone advises to disable it?

Everybody on the Internet advises to disable root login via SSH as it is a bad practice and a security hole in the system, but nobody explains why it is so. What is so dangerous in enabling root ...
43
votes
7answers
25k views

Does /usr/sbin/nologin as a login shell serve a security purpose?

In my /etc/passwd file, I can see that the www-data user used by Apache, as well as all sorts of system users, have either /usr/sbin/nologin or /bin/false as their login shell. For example, here is a ...
16
votes
5answers
9k views

Shell Script mktemp, what's the best method to create temporary named pipe?

I'm aware its best to create temporary files with mktemp, but what about named pipes? I have an idea, I'm sure it would work, but I would really like an expert opinion. I prefer things to be as ...
11
votes
3answers
33k views

How to “close” open ports?

A few days ago I started to care a lot about my data security, I end up nmaping myself with: nmap 127.0.0.1 Surprise, surprise, I have lots of active services listen to localhost: $ nmap 127.0.0.1 ...
29
votes
3answers
3k views

Why shouldn't someone use passwords in the command line?

Why do people fear writing passwords in the command line? The history file is located in ~/.history, so it's available only to the user who executed the commands (and root).
13
votes
2answers
526 views

How can I be sure that a directory or file is actually deleted?

I know that most files, when deleted, aren't actually removed from the disk, and can be recovered later. How can I ensure that a directory I had deleted will actually be removed from the disk? Are ...
17
votes
3answers
8k views

How should one set up full-disk encryption on OpenBSD?

Is there a preferred method to set up full-disk encryption under OpenBSD, similar to dm-crypt under Linux? I'm looking for full-disk encryption, as if someone were to steal my notebook they could ...
29
votes
4answers
1k views

Execution of possibly harmful program on Linux

I'm writing a program that will test programs written by students. I'm afraid that I can't trust them and I need to make sure that it won't end up badly for the computer running it. I was thinking ...
13
votes
1answer
7k views

Ghost Vulnerability - CVE-2015-0235

Does the Ghost Vulnerability require access (as in being a logged in user) to the effected OS in question? Can someone clarify the 'remote attacker that is able to make an application call'? I only ...
12
votes
7answers
3k views

How do I encrypt git on my server?

Heres the closest I've gotten: I installed gitolite in the /Private folder using ecryptfs-utils (sudo apt-get install ecryptfs-utils adduser git ecryptfs-setup-private then the rest was configuring ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

D-Bus authentication and authorization

I'm trying to set up remote access to D-Bus, and I don't understand how authentication and authorization are (not) working. I have a D-Bus server listening on an abstract socket. $ echo $...
9
votes
9answers
2k views

How to prevent a process from writing files

I want to run a command on Linux in a way that it cannot create or open any files to write. It should still be able to read files as normal (so an empty chroot is not an option), and still be able to ...
3
votes
2answers
9k views

Disable stack protection on Ubuntu for buffer overflow without C compiler flags

I'd like to try some shell codes and I want to disable linux protections. I know I could compile using flags but I know another way exists to disable these protections in general I just can't ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I limit ssh *remote* port forwarding?

I need to limit which ports can be remotely 'ssh -R' forwarded by an user. I know about permitopen option on authorized_keys, but as it says on man page it only limits local 'ssh -L' port forwarding ...