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7/30/2009
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John H. Sawyer
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Pwnie Awards Bring Fame And Shame

The third annual Pwnie Awards at Black Hat in Las Vegas, hosted by Alex Sotirov, Dino Dai Zovi, HD Moore, Halvar Flake, and Rich, celebrated the highs and lows in the security industry. As Dino said, "First we reward for great work, then we shame."

The third annual Pwnie Awards at Black Hat in Las Vegas, hosted by Alex Sotirov, Dino Dai Zovi, HD Moore, Halvar Flake, and Rich, celebrated the highs and lows in the security industry. As Dino said, "First we reward for great work, then we shame."I had a blast, and the presenters obviously enjoyed themselves when presenting each award, which are My Little Ponies that have been painted gold (picture on Pwnie Awards site). The presenters took the time to describe each nominee in detail, and it was interesting to hear the thoughts of the experts as they covered each one.

Alex noted that all of the nominees came from people in the industry and that several of the judges received nominations but had to disqualify themselves because of obvious reason.

Adobe received a lot of abuse for their repeated failures this year with Acrobat and Flash vulnerabilities, and as Dino so aptly pointed out it's a reader, it doesn't need to write to the file system.

The results will be posted to the Pwnie Awards site later today, but here is the unofficial list. (UPDATE: The Pwnie site has been updated with the winners.)

    Best Server-Side Bug - Linux SCTP FWD Chunk Memory Corruption

    Best Client-Side Bug - msvidctl.dll MPEG2TuneRequest Stack buffer overflow

    Best Privilege Escalation Bug - Linux udev Netlink Message Privilege Escalation

    Mass 0wnage - Red Hat Networks Backdoored OpenSSH Packages

    Most Innovative Research - From 0 to 0day on Symbian

    Lamest Vendor Response - Linux for continually assuming that all kernel memory corruption bugs are only Denial-of-Service

    - Juniper got an honorable mention for pulling Barnaby Jack's talk. Most Overhyped Bug

    - MS08-067 Server Service NetpwPathCanonicalize() Stack Overflow (CVE-2008-4250)

    Best Song - Nice Report by Doctor Raid

    Most Epic FAIL - Twitter Gets Hacked and the "Cloud Crisis"

    Lifetime Achievement Award - Solar Designer

John H. Sawyer is a senior security engineer on the IT Security Team at the University of Florida. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are his own and do not represent the views and opinions of the UF IT Security Team or the University of Florida. When John's not fighting flaming, malware-infested machines or performing autopsies on blitzed boxes, he can usually be found hanging with his family, bouncing a baby on one knee and balancing a laptop on the other. Special to Dark Reading.

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