Showing posts from January, 2008

An Open Letter to Ken Leonard, CEO, ScanAlert

Dear Mr. Leonard,

As well you are aware; the Hacker Safe brand has long been viewed by those in the information security field with varying levels of skepticism, if not vehement disdain. As there are a plethora of blogs, articles, and exposed vulnerabilities available for you to review, I will not waste your time with excerpts validating our position. Suffice it say, the community at large shares certain doubt about the service offering ScanAlert arrogantly calls Hacker Safe.
It is our view that this is a marketing position only. Nothing, I repeat, nothing, is truly "hacker safe". You claim that websites are free of vulnerabilities when they are clearly not. This is disingenuous and is at the root of what angers information security professionals. If a site is vulnerable while under the auspicious care of ScanAlert's Hacker Safe program should it not lose its Hacker Safe credential until such a time as the vulnerability is remediated? If I take this down to a fundamentall…

XSS and PCI: Not compliant, or Hacker Safe

As a follow up to the last post on sites vulnerable to XSS that are certified McAfee Hacker Safe, there is more to this story.
Of the additional sites listed in Thomas Claburn's recent Information Week article, many take credit cards online and are thus required to comply with PCI DSS 1.1.
If a website is vulnerable to XSS, THE COMPANY IS NOT PCI COMPLIANT.
Supporting language from the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard:
6.5 Develop all web applications based on secure coding guidelines such as the Open Web Application Security Project guidelines. Review custom application code to identify coding vulnerabilities. Cover prevention of common coding vulnerabilities in software development processes, to include the following:
6.5.1 Unvalidated input
6.5.2 Broken access control (for example, malicious use of user IDs)
6.5.3 Broken authentication and session management (use of account credentials and session
6.5.4 Cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks

So not only can we call into …

Hacker Safe? Not so much.

Likely you've all read about Hacker Safe certified being hacked. ScanAlert, recently bought by McAfee, says that "research indicates sites remotely scanned for known vulnerabilities on a daily basis, such as those earning 'Hacker Safe' certification, can prevent over 99% of hacker crime."
I agree...but here comes strike two.
I was happily bouncing about the internet looking for things that should be fixed, when what did I see at Toastmasters International but a McAfee Hacker Safe certificate. Ever the skeptic, I said to myself "Prove it." But, of course, because my white hat and professional values require it, I remembered that first, do no harm are words to live by. But a wee script test in a form field can't hurt, right?
There's video of this here if you prefer.
Let's begin.
Here's the Advanced Search page, note the McAfee Hacker Safe tag in the lower right:

Then, said little test script about to be submitted to the Advanced Sea…

NSM-Console and HeX update

While researching the HeX System for the pending February toolsmith, I was extremely pleased to discover NSM-Console, from Matthew Lee Hinman. I've not yet seen such an efficient, useful, all encompassing framework for offline packet analysis. NSM-Console includes modules for:
# aimsnarf
# ngrep (gif/jpg/pdf/exe/pe/ne/elf/3pg/torrent)
# tcpxtract
# tcpflow
# chaosreader
# bro-IDS
# snort
# tcpdstat
# capinfos
# tshark
# argus
# ragator
# racount
# rahosts
# hash (md5 & sha256)
# ra
# honeysnap
# p0f
# pads
# fl0p
# iploc
Consider giving both HeX System and the included NSM-Console an immediate look.

Zango's in your Face(book)

The Zangonistas are at it again, this time deftly disguising their "software" as a Facebook Widget. Fortinet, who discovered the issue, discusses the "Secret Crush" widget at length, so no need to repeat their extensive effort.
Instead, I'd like to offer a bit of analysis, then invoke a debate.


I ran Setup.exe, as found in hxxp://, through the analysis mill and I think the evidence speaks for itself.
IMPORTANT NOTE FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION: All of the following occurs BEFORE you accept the EULA.

IPs called: Zango Zango Zango Zango


January's toolsmith - Gpg4win

January's toolsmith column in the ISSA Journal features Gpg4win, a suite that integrates GPG into your Windows envronment. Next month will be discussing more powerful NSM opportunities with HeX, a FreeBSD-based Live CD loaded with network security monitoring tools. toolsmith offers insights on tools useful to the infosec practitioner, typically open source or inexpensive. The ISSA Journal is available to members in print and online at Article copies are available on the toolsmith page.