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.

Vulnerabilities / Threats

11/10/2011
11:14 AM
50%
50%

Public Cloud Security Credentials Flunk A Research Test

Researchers who grabbed security credentials via Google code search advise caution regarding sensitive data and public cloud services.

The access codes and secret keys of thousands of public cloud services users can be easily found with a simple Google code search, a team of security researchers said.

Researchers at Stach & Liu, a security consulting firm that develops Google hacking tools, first revealed the results of their cloud services research (PDF) at the Hacker Halted conference last month in Miami. Now the team is offering one word of advice to companies that are considering storing critical information on the public cloud: Don't.

"It is not a good idea to put sensitive data out in the cloud right now--at least not until there are intrusion-detection systems that would let users see these types of searches on their cloud services," said Fran Brown, managing director at Stach & Liu. "Companies are pushing forward on the cloud because they want the functionality, but they're not seeing the risk."

In an online demonstration, Brown showed how an attacker who knows Google and some simple facts about cloud services authentication can easily find the access codes, passwords, and secret keys needed to unlock data stored in public cloud services environments such as Amazon's EC3.

Such data is routinely stored by application developers and system administrators who don't know that their simple text files might be indexed by search engines and discoverable with a simple Google code search, Brown said.

"We found literally thousands of keys stored this way, any one of which could be used to take control of computers in the cloud, shut them down, or used to launch attacks on other computers on the same service," he states.

The problem, according to Stach & Liu, is not necessarily the service provider, but the developers and administrators who store their credentials carelessly in text files and application code that might be exposed to the Web, particularly in Web-based cloud environments. "All you need is one careless developer who puts his credentials in a text file--and you're hosed," Brown said.

Read the rest of this article on Dark Reading.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
7 Tips for Infosec Pros Considering A Lateral Career Move
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  1/21/2020
For Mismanaged SOCs, The Price Is Not Right
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  1/22/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
IT 2020: A Look Ahead
Are you ready for the critical changes that will occur in 2020? We've compiled editor insights from the best of our network (Dark Reading, Data Center Knowledge, InformationWeek, ITPro Today and Network Computing) to deliver to you a look at the trends, technologies, and threats that are emerging in the coming year. Download it today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
How Enterprises are Attacking the Cybersecurity Problem
Organizations have invested in a sweeping array of security technologies to address challenges associated with the growing number of cybersecurity attacks. However, the complexity involved in managing these technologies is emerging as a major problem. Read this report to find out what your peers biggest security challenges are and the technologies they are using to address them.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-16029
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the application programming interface (API) of Cisco Smart Software Manager On-Prem could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to change user account information which can prevent users from logging in, resulting in a denial of service (DoS) condition of the web interface. Th...
CVE-2020-3115
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the CLI of the Cisco SD-WAN Solution vManage software could allow an authenticated, local attacker to elevate privileges to root-level privileges on the underlying operating system. The vulnerability is due to insufficient input validation. An attacker could exploit this vulnerabi...
CVE-2020-3121
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the web-based management interface of Cisco Small Business Smart and Managed Switches could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to conduct a cross-site scripting (XSS) attack against a user of the interface. The vulnerability is due to insufficient validation of user-supplie...
CVE-2020-3129
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
A vulnerability in the web-based management interface of Cisco Unity Connection Software could allow an authenticated, remote attacker to perform a stored cross-site scripting (XSS) attack. The vulnerability is due to insufficient input validation by the web-based management interface. An attacker c...
CVE-2020-3131
PUBLISHED: 2020-01-26
[CVE-2020-3131_su] A vulnerability in the Cisco Webex Teams client for Windows could allow an authenticated, remote attacker to cause the client to crash, resulting in a denial of service (DoS) condition. The attacker needs a valid developer account to exploit this vulnerability. The vulnerability i...