Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Endpoint //

Privacy

3/9/2015
04:50 PM
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
100%
0%

OpenSSL To Undergo Major Audit

The Linux Foundation's Core Infrastructure Initiative funding work to take a closer look at the TLS stack.

The first major public audit of OpenSSL will soon be underway, backed by the Linux Foundation's Core Infrastructure Initiative -- a $1.2 million open-source research fund established last spring in the wake of Heartbleed. The audit will be one of the first well-funded efforts to harden open-source infrastructure, historically financed only by researchers' free time, sense of civic duty, and community spirit. 

"The amount of time and work this is going to take, just trying to do it on nights and weekends is not going to yield good results," says Tom Ritter, principal security consultant of NCC Group, which is part of Cryptography Services, the team conducting the audit.

In April 2014, 12 leading technology firms -- Amazon Web Services, Cisco, Dell, Facebook, Fujitsu, Google, IBM, Intel, Microsoft, NetApp, RackSpace, and VMware -- agreed to contribute $100,000 apiece per year, for the next three years, to the Initiative. 

When deciding where those resources would go, "OpenSSL was the frontrunner," says Ritter. "It hadn't had as much attention paid to it as it should have."

Never was that clearer than last year when the critical Heartbleed vulnerability in OpenSSL's implementation of the Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol's "heartbeat" extension was discovered. Although Ritter says the team does not know what they'll find when they begin the audit, clearly Heartbleed is part of their thought process; as Ritter explained in a blog post today:

The audit’s primary focus is on the TLS stacks, covering protocol flow, state transitions, and memory management. We’ll also be looking at the BIOs, most of the high-profile cryptographical algorithms, and setting up fuzzers for the ASN.1 and x509 parsers.

"If you do an audit," says Ritter, "you get the most value out of it if you've done some preparation." The OpenSSL community has done such preparation, he says, by hiring more staff and completing a reformatting of its codebase earlier this month.

Ritter says the audit will take several months to complete, and expects to publish results over the summer.  

Sara Peters is Senior Editor at Dark Reading and formerly the editor-in-chief of Enterprise Efficiency. Prior that she was senior editor for the Computer Security Institute, writing and speaking about virtualization, identity management, cybersecurity law, and a myriad ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
robrjay
50%
50%
robrjay,
User Rank: Apprentice
3/16/2015 | 9:47:19 AM
Re: How about supporting OpenSSL
I agree it's an inictment of those that have used it withouth contributing. However, I thing it's a good thing it's getting an proper audit. The contributing organizations all have skin in the game now. It will benefit their businesses as well as general public in helping to make it more secure. We all win.  
Charlie Babcock
50%
50%
Charlie Babcock,
User Rank: Ninja
3/10/2015 | 12:28:13 PM
How about supporting OpenSSL
A bit of a rebuke to open source practices: "just doing it at night and on weekends" isn't going to cut it. A new worry is taking hold that some open source isn't maintained professionally enough. The answer might be to provide more support to the open source programmers knowledgeable in the code. OpenSSL, for all its widespread use, was getting about $2,000 a year in support in donations. That's an indictment of all those who use it without understanding its slender base of support.
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 9/21/2020
Hacking Yourself: Marie Moe and Pacemaker Security
Gary McGraw Ph.D., Co-founder Berryville Institute of Machine Learning,  9/21/2020
Startup Aims to Map and Track All the IT and Security Things
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  9/22/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
Special Report: Computing's New Normal
This special report examines how IT security organizations have adapted to the "new normal" of computing and what the long-term effects will be. Read it and get a unique set of perspectives on issues ranging from new threats & vulnerabilities as a result of remote working to how enterprise security strategy will be affected long term.
Flash Poll
How IT Security Organizations are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
How IT Security Organizations are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
The COVID-19 pandemic turned the world -- and enterprise computing -- on end. Here's a look at how cybersecurity teams are retrenching their defense strategies, rebuilding their teams, and selecting new technologies to stop the oncoming rise of online attacks.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-15930
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-24
An XSS issue in Joplin desktop 1.0.190 to 1.0.245 allows arbitrary code execution via a malicious HTML embed tag.
CVE-2020-19447
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-24
SQL injection exists in the jdownloads 3.2.63 component for Joomla! com_jdownloads/models/send.php via the f_marked_files_id parameter.
CVE-2020-3560
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-24
A vulnerability in Cisco Aironet Access Points (APs) could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to cause a denial of service (DoS) on an affected device. The vulnerability is due to improper resource management while processing specific packets. An attacker could exploit this vulnerability by s...
CVE-2020-3509
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-24
A vulnerability in the DHCP message handler of Cisco IOS XE Software for Cisco cBR-8 Converged Broadband Routers could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to cause the supervisor to crash, which could result in a denial of service (DoS) condition. The vulnerability is due to insufficient error...
CVE-2020-3510
PUBLISHED: 2020-09-24
A vulnerability in the Umbrella Connector component of Cisco IOS XE Software for Cisco Catalyst 9200 Series Switches could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to trigger a reload, resulting in a denial of service condition on an affected device. The vulnerability is due to insufficient error h...