Airtight system security with Grsecurity
Security-conscious people dig a deep moat with crocodiles around their homes, hide their furniture in back rooms, and only let visitors into the bathroom if they know the secret password. Grsecurity follows a similarly extreme principle.
A small Linux patch collection called Grsecurity (for Greater Security) transforms the Linux kernel into an extremely untrusting fellow. Grsecurity unleashes a whole package of actions that preemptively block out attackers. Each user is initially treated as a principal source of danger. For example, Grsecurity only allows certain users to call dmesg; it locks the /proc directory, and it prevents access to /dev/kmem, /dev/mem, and /dev/port. Grsecurity also moves applications to a random location in memory (address space layout randomization), and it hides all the kernel threads.
The core of Grsecurity is Role-Based Access Control (RBAC for short), which sits on top of existing rights management. Grsecurity initially deprives all users of their access
rights, even hiding parts of the filesystem from them, and thus allows only the bare necessities. The administrator can then allow specific actions for individual users. Users with similar tasks can be grouped as “roles,” and the admin can then grant additional rights to these roles. For example, the webmaster group needs to start the SSH daemon, but the database administrator group does not.
Buy this article as PDF
PC vendor will pre-install Ubuntu on portables in India.
More embarrassment for Adobe's embattled multimedia tool
Mozilla’s script blocker add-on could be putting malware sites on the whitelist.
The Internet community officially banishes the notoriously unsafe Secure Sockets Layer protocol.
Popular desktop environment continues the Gnome 2 legacy – with new support for the Gnome 3 toolkit.
The Obama White House has issued a memorandum telling all US government agencies they must use HTTPS for all websites and web communication.
New program will dial up security for the Firefox browser.
Red Hat's community distro embraces the cloud.
New partnership will bring more and better CS training to US schools
Criminals offer online help over Tor network