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Risk

8/3/2009
10:06 AM
Keith Ferrell
Keith Ferrell
Commentary
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Secure Certificate Vulnerabilities Revealed

The SSL Certificate that tells visitors a site is certified as trustworthy may be easier to fake than previously thought. And that's one more reminder that the whole system of trust authorization is in need of work.

The SSL Certificate that tells visitors a site is certified as trustworthy may be easier to fake than previously thought. And that's one more reminder that the whole system of trust authorization is in need of work.In a presentation revealing the ease with which certificates of trust can be acquired by false means, researchers from Intrepidus Group raised questions about the security practices of some of the leading Certification Authorities (CA).

The dilemma, according to Intrepidus consultant Michael Zusman, is the degree of Web apps and automation CAs deploy to hasten the validation of certificates. Zusman demonstrated how he'd used phony credentials top obtain certificates from CAs StartCom, THWATE, and LoginLive.com.

Additionally he warned that CAs are not well-defended against cross-scripting attacks or SQL injections.

Zusman made his case at the DefCon 17 hacker conference, adding to the rising tide of SSL concerns and authentication worries.

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