Re: [ISN] Security flaw found in Microsoft Web browser

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Thu Aug 15 2002 - 04:12:51 PDT

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    Forwarded from: Mark Hahn <MHahnat_private>
    At 05:34 AM 8/14/2002, InfoSec News wrote:
    > The eminent Mr Schneier must have been misquoted. What this permits
    > is an MITM attack, the most obscure and unlikely of the scenarios.
    > Passive listening is presumably unaffected, by orders of magnitude a
    > greater danger.  I.e., say Yes to Mallory, say No to Eve.
    > Not that anyone will believe them, but in this case, it is indeed
    > appropriate to assure that MITM attacks are hard. This doesn't mean
    > that they shouldn't fix the bug, but this flaw is more embarressing
    > than devastating;  the fact that it took so long to find also points
    > out the relative lack of popularity that Mallory has in the real
    > world.
    In my experience, a MITM attack is any thing but "obscure and
    unlikely". I have built several middle-man sites for various reasons
    and they are not overly complex to build. When used for a white-hat
    purposes, they are called "Proxies". Add a little spam and you can
    have thousands of users "using" the proxy. And, given that the "proxy"
    can really use any valid certificate, you can keep any SSL-enabled
    browser from complaining.
    I wonder if this is a matter of experience-based perspective? I can
    see how to build the MITM model and make it work, mostly. I cannot see
    how to a place an eavesdropping in a location likely to get enough
    traffic to make it worth while. So maybe an eavesdropping attack looks
    easier to some, MITM looks easier to others?
    Mark P. Hahn, CISSP                 MHahnat_private
    Chief Technical Officer             609 716 9320
    TCB Technologies, Inc.              Princeton Junction, New Jersey, USA
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