security problems

Debian Linux version 6.0.2 has been released. This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the stable release, along with a few adjustments to serious problems. The kernel image used by the installer has been updated to incorporate a number of important and security-related fixes together with support for additional hardware.

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This is the first article in the mini-series of two articles about Firewall Builder.

Systems administrators have a choice of modern Open Source and commercial firewall platforms at their disposal. They could use netfilter/iptables on Linux, PF, ipfilter, ipfw on OpenBSD and FreeBSD, Cisco ASA (PIX) and other commercial solutions. All these are powerful implementations with rich feature set and good performance. Unfortunately, managing security policy manually with all of these remains non-trivial task for several reasons. Even though the configuration language can be complex and overwhelming with its multitude of features and options, this is not the most difficult problem in my opinion. Administrator who manages netfilter/iptables, PF or Cisco firewall all the time quickly becomes an expert in their platform of choice. To do the job right, they need to understand internal path of the packet inside Linux or BSD kernel and its interaction with different parts of packet filtering engine. Things get significantly more difficult in the installations using different OS and platforms where the administrator needs to switch from netfilter/iptables to PF to Cisco routers and ASA to implement coordinated changes across multiple devices. This is where making changes get complicated and probability of human error increases. Unfortunately typos and more significant errors in firewall or router access list configurations lead to either service downtime or security problems, both expensive in terms of damage and time required to fix.

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An interesting article published by security guru Bruce Schneier:

Blaming the victim is common in IT: users are to blame because they don’t patch their systems, choose lousy passwords, fall for phishing attacks, and so on. But, while users are, and will continue to be, a major source of security problems, focusing on them is an unhelpful way to think.

=> Blaming the user is easy – but it’s better to bypass them altogether

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Didn’t take long to release new updated version.

The Debian project is pleased to announce the sixth update of its stable distribution Debian GNU/Linux 4.0 (codename “etch”). This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the stable release, along with a few adjustment to serious problems. This update has been rated as having important security impact. You are advised to upgrade system ASAP.

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Hackers (read as cracker) attacking on unpatched versions of the Mambo content management system that can be used to build botnets for use in phishing scams and distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. They are using PHP-based CMS mass-exploitation and other vulnerabilities in open source CMS applications. If you are in server, collocation businesses then […]

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