[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Edlug Archive Mar 2004 ]

Re: [edlug] Big blue v Big poo

On Tue, Mar 30, 2004 at 07:57:33AM +0000, Leo Friel wrote:
> > Generally speaking both systems have, in practice, had near identical
> >  security.  It's the applications on both sides which have had exploits.
> I always thought that one of the strengths of Linux/Xnixes is itheir 
> multi-user nature which is fundamental to preventing the applications from 
> being over-malicious. I find it bizarre how much chaos an outlook macro can 
> wreak. Would you say that's an application problem? It's the application 
> that's been exploited, for sure, but shouldn't the OS/kernel or whatever be 
> able to protect it's own integrity?

The OS mechanisms can provide protection against untrusted local users
(apart from the occasional privilege escalation problem), and modern
editions of Windows provide that sort of protection too.  However,
protecting against compromised trusted users is extremely difficult.

Once control of a user application is gained, an attacker may be able to
set up the user's environment to capture passwords to su, sudo, ssh and
so on.  So application vulnerabilities are actually important to overall
system security.


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