12.27.10

Gemini version available ♊︎

Microsoft Cannot Offer Security on the Web, Either

Posted in Microsoft, Security, Windows at 1:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Predator

Summary: Vultures keep circling not just Microsoft Windows but just about anything from the company, which failed to comprehend security

THERE are companies that increasingly decide to rely on online services, which they sometimes refer to as ‘the cloud’. There is a false assumption about security though. First of all, if one accesses these services from a Windows-running PC, one is not secure. In China, for example, hackers can access Windows source code, which was never written to be inspected in this way (and many security experts have not had the time to find errors in it prior to release). On the server side too Microsoft is failing based on the latest news:

1. Microsoft BPOS configuration screw up causes data disclosure

Customers of Microsoft’s Business Productivity Online Suite—a cloud-based suite including Exchange, SharePoint, LiveMeeting, and Office Communicator—may have had certain data leaked after a configuration error left their contact information exposed.

The configuration problem left information in customers’ Offline Address Books exposed to other customers. The Offline Address Book is an Exchange feature that allows Outlook users to download a copy of all the e-mail addresses and mailing list aliases that an organization uses, so that they can be used even when disconnected from Exchange. It’s e-mail addresses on those lists that could have been made available.

2. Microsoft BPOS cloud service hit with data breach

Company data belonging to customers of Microsoft’s hosted business suite BPOS has been accessed and downloaded by other users of the software.

The issue affected the Offline Address Book of customers of the Business Productivity Online Suite (BPOS) Standard suite.

Microsoft confirmed the data breach to Webwereld, a Dutch IDG publication.

This is far from being the first BPOS cockup [1, 2, 3] and putting that together with the botnet problem on the client side, there’s no reason to choose Microsoft over GNU/Linux with Google as host, for example. The European politicians recently began talking about Windows botnets, bringing up problems like Conficker and Stuxnet: [via Glyn Moody]

Inside the EU, damages from this botnet were reported in France, the UK and Germany. French fighter planes were unable to take off after military computers were infected by Conficker in January 2009. The German army reported in February 2009 that parts of its computer network were infected by Conficker, making the websites of the German army, and the Defence ministry unreachable and preventing them from being updated by their administrators. Certain IT services, including e-mails, were unavailable for weeks to the UK Ministry of Defence personnel in January/February 2009 after they were infected by the Conficker botnet.

In the last few days experts at international level have launched an alert for a new type of malicious computer warm called Stuxnet that is infecting a high number of power plants, pipelines and factories and could be used to control plant operations remotely. If confirmed, this would be the first case of a highly sophisticated botnet aimed at industrial targets, a development experts don’t hesitate to define ”the first directed cyber weapon”. Botnets like Stuxnet could give wrong information and orders to industrial plants and operate sabotage at several levels, causing severe damages.

Incidentally, there’s advice from Wayne Borean (“My Christmas gift to Windows Users” he calls it) which goes under the heading “Computer Security Suggestions For Microsoft Windows Users” and moving away from Windows is high up on the list. For those who don’t know yet, for Windows administrators it may have been a tough holiday, as usual (this happens every year at this time) because “Microsoft confirm[ed] critical un-patched Internet Explorer CSS vulnerability” just before Christmas:

The flaw could allow malicious users to run unauthorised code remotely inside the iexplore.exe process. Proof-of-concept code is currently available that exploits the vulnerability. The code bypasses ASLR and DEP security protections in Windows. Security firm Vupen warned of the vulnerability earlier this month.

Here is more about the zero-day exploit: [via]

A remote code execution vulnerability against Internet Explorer was announced recently, and a proof-of-concept exploit has already been added to the Metasploit products.

And finally, consider the following batch of news:

i. Malware Posing as Fake Desktop Utilities Instead of Phony Antivirus

Recently, researchers at GFI Software have noticed an increase in the number of fake security software scams purporting to be disk utilities that fix disk errors. Instead of listing Trojans, these security alerts pretend to find disk fragmentation or file system integrity problems.

ii. Bummed-out users give anti-virus bloatware the boot

One in four users turned off their anti-virus protection in response to performance problems after they installed security software, according to a survey by security software firm Avira.

The poll of users of the German anti-virus outfit, which like AVG and Avast offers free security software to consumers, also found that more than three in five (62.8 per cent) users had tried multiple anti-virus products over the last year.

The problem is not just Windows; it’s Microsoft products in general.

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. EPO Cannot and Will Not Self-Regulate

    The term financialisation helps describe some of the activities of the EPO in recent years; see Wikipedia on financialisation below



  2. [Meme] Germany's Licence to Break the Law

    Remember that the young Campinos asked dad for his immunity after he had gotten drunk and crashed the car; maybe the EPO should stop giving diplomatic immunity to people, seeing what criminals (e.g. Benoît Battistelli) this attracts; the German government is destroying its image (and the EU’s) by fostering such corruption, wrongly believing that it’s worth it because of Eurozone domination for patents/litigation



  3. EPO Dislikes Science and Scientists

    The EPO's management has become like a corrupt political party with blind faith in money and monopolies (or monopoly money); it has lost sight of its original goals and at this moment it serves to exacerbate an awful pandemic, as the video above explains



  4. Links 1/12/2021: LibreOffice 7.3 Beta, Krita 5.0, Julia 1.7

    Links for the day



  5. Links 1/12/2021: NixOS 21.11 Released

    Links for the day



  6. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, November 30, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, November 30, 2021



  7. Links 1/12/2021: Tux Paint 0.9.27 and WordPress 5.9 Beta

    Links for the day



  8. [Meme] EPO Administrative Council Believing EPO-Bribed 'Media' (IAM Still Shilling and Lying for Cash)

    IAM continues to do what brings money from EPO management and Team UPC, never mind if it is being disputed by the patent examiners themselves



  9. The EPO's Mythical “Gap” Has Been Found and It's Bonuses for People Who Use Pure Fiction to Steal From Patent Examiners

    The phony president who has the audacity to claim there's a budget gap is issuing millions of euros for his enablers to enjoy; weeks ahead of the next meeting of national delegates the Central Staff Committee (CSC) tells them: "Events show that the delegations’ concerns about functional allowances have materialised. The lack of transparency and inflation of the budget envelope gives rise to the suspicion that high management is pursuing a policy of self-service at the expense of EPO staff, which is difficult to reconcile with the Office’s claimed cost-saving policy, and to the detriment of the whole Organisation."



  10. Video: Making the Internet a Better Place for People, Not Megacorporations

    Following that earlier list of suggested improvements for a freedom-respecting Internet, here's a video and outline



  11. Links 30/11/2021: KDE Plasma 5.23.4, 4MLinux 38.0, Long GitHub Downtime, and Microsoft's CEO Selling Away Shares

    Links for the day



  12. A Concise Manifesto For Freedom-Respecting Internet

    An informal list of considerations to make when reshaping the Internet to better serve people, not a few corporations that are mostly military contractors subsidised by the American taxpayers



  13. Freenode.net Becomes a 'Reddit Clone' and Freenode IRC is Back to Old Configurations After Flushing Down Decades' Worth of User/Channel Data and Locking/Shutting Out Longtime Users

    Freenode is having another go; after “chits” and “jobs” (among many other ideas) have clearly failed, and following the change of daemon (resulting in massive loss of data and even security issues associated with impersonation) as well as pointless rebrand as “Joseon”, the domain Freenode.net becomes something completely different and the IRC network reopens to all



  14. Jack Dorsey's Decision is a Wake-up Call: Social Control Media is Just a Toxic Bubble

    The state of the World Wide Web (reliability, preservation, accessibility, compatibility etc.) was worsened a lot more than a decade ago; with social control media that’s nowadays just a pile of JavaScript programs we’re basically seeing the Web gradually turning into another Adobe Flash (but this time they tell us it’s a “standard”), exacerbating an already-oversized ‘bubble economy’ where companies operate at a loss while claiming to be worth hundreds of billions (USD) and generally serve imperialistic objectives by means of manipulation like surveillance, selective curation, and censorship



  15. IRC Proceedings: Monday, November 29, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, November 29, 2021



  16. Links 29/11/2021: NuTyX 21.10.5 and CrossOver 21.1.0

    Links for the day



  17. This Apt Has Super Dumbass Powers. Linus Sebastian and Pop_OS!

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  18. [Meme] Trying to Appease Provocateurs and Borderline Trolls

    GNU/Linux isn’t just a clone of Microsoft Windows and it oughtn’t be a clone of Microsoft Windows, either; some people set themselves up for failure, maybe by intention



  19. Centralised Git Hosting Has a Business Model Which is Hostile Towards Developers' Interests (in Microsoft's Case, It's an Attack on Reciprocal Licensing and Persistent Manipulation)

    Spying, censoring, and abusing projects/developers/users are among the perks Microsoft found in GitHub; the E.E.E.-styled takeover is being misused for perception manipulation and even racism, so projects really need to take control of their hosting (outsourcing is risky and very expensive in the long run)



  20. Links 29/11/2021: FWUPD's 'Best Known Configuration' and Glimpse at OpenZFS 3.0

    Links for the day



  21. President Biden Wants to Put Microsofter in Charge of the Patent Office, Soon to Penalise Patent Applicants Who Don't Use Microsoft's Proprietary Formats

    The tradition of GAFAM or GIAFAM inside the USPTO carries on (e.g. Kappos and Lee; Kappos lobbies for Microsoft and IBM, whereas Lee now works for Amazon/Bezos after a career at Google); it's hard to believe anymore that the USPTO exists to serve innovators rather than aggressive monopolists, shielding their territory by patent threats (lawsuits or worse aggression) and cross-licensing that's akin to a cartel



  22. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part VIII — Mr. Graveley's Long Career Serving Microsoft's Agenda (Before Hiring by Microsoft to Work on GitHub's GPL Violations Machine)

    Balabhadra (Alex) Graveley was promoting .NET (or Mono) since his young days; his current job at Microsoft is consistent with past harms to GNU/Linux, basically pushing undesirable (except to Microsoft) things to GNU/Linux users; Tomboy used to be the main reason for distro ISOs to include Mono



  23. Dr. Andy Farnell on Teaching Cybersecurity in an Age of 'Fake Security'

    By Dr. Andy Farnell



  24. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, November 28, 2021

    IRC logs for Sunday, November 28, 2021



  25. Links 29/11/2021: Linux 5.16 RC3 and Lots of Patent Catch-up

    Links for the day



  26. By 2022 0% of 'News' Coverage About Patents Will Be Actual Journalism (Patent Litigation Sector Has Hijacked the World Wide Web to Disseminate Self-Promotional Misinformation)

    Finding news about the EPO is almost impossible because today’s so-called ‘news’ sites are in the pockets of Benoît Battistelli, António Campinos, and their cohorts who turned the EPO into a hub of litigation, not science; this is part of an international (worldwide) problem because financial resources for journalism have run out, and so the vacuum is filled/replaced almost entirely by Public Relations (PR) and marketing



  27. Trying to Appease Those Who Never Liked Free Software or Those Who Blindly Loved All Patent Monopolies to Begin With

    It’s crystal clear that trying to appease everyone, all the time, is impossible; in the case of the EPO, for example, we hope that exposing Team Battistelli/Campinos helps raise awareness of the harms of patent maximalism, and when speaking about Free software — whilst occasionally bashing the alternatives (proprietary) — we hope to convince more people to join the “Good Fight”



  28. Links 28/11/2021: Laravel 8.73 Released, GitHub Offline for Hours

    Links for the day



  29. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, November 27, 2021

    IRC logs for Saturday, November 27, 2021



  30. Links 27/11/2021: Nvidia’s DLSS Hype and Why GNU/Linux Matters

    Links for the day


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts