Security Headers on the Top 1,000,000 Websites: November 2013 Report

It has been almost exactly a year since we conducted the first top 1 million security headers report so it is a great time to re-run the analysis and see how well security header adoption is growing. As before, the latest Chrome and Firefox User-Agent strings were used to make requests to the top 1 million sites over both HTTP and HTTPS. Out of the 2,589,918 responses we had over 100,000 distinct security headers and values to analyze.

A Tale of Two Compilers

What’s wrong with the following C code?

char buf[32];
scanf("%32s", buf);

It’s a classic and easy to make off-by-one error, caused by the willy-nilly inconsistency of common C functions regarding whose responsibility the null terminator is and whether it’s included in a passed count of bytes. In this case, scanf() will read up to 32 bytes from standard input and then append a null terminator, which overflows the buffer of 32 characters and writes a null byte to whatever happens to be next on the stack.

Muddying The Water On Security and Embedded Devices

An FTC Forum on security and the Internet of Things showed industry doing its best to muddy the water when it comes to building secure products.

This was a big week for the Internet of Things (IoT) in Washington D.C., as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) hosted its first ever workshop to discuss security and privacy issues created by the proliferation of IoT technology.

Ghosts In The Machine: The Strange Case of BadBIOS

Dragos Ruiu's 'BadBIOS' malware may just be evidence that he's having a 'bad day.' But sometimes nightmares are worth paying attention to!

Can a lifetime of researching stealthy computer attacks drive you mad? That’s what some are suggesting is the real story behind BadBIOS, a piece of allegedly super stealthy malware that has plagued computers belonging to researcher Dragos Ruiu for years. Nightmarish, to be sure.

The (Coming) Age of the Developer-King

It's too early to say much about what our world will look like once hundreds of billions of Internet connected devices come on line. But one thing is sure: on The Internet of Things, it is the application developer who is king.

Prognosticating about the shape, size and flavor of The Internet of Things has practically become an industry unto itself. In addition to predictions from the usual suspects like Gartner and IDC, a long list of consultancies, technology firms and independent thought leaders stand ready to predict how big the IoT opportunity is and what companies stand to benefit from its success.

Food for Thought: Mobile Application Security & HIPAA

As a pentester, it’s always a different story when we are the ones writing the report. Being on the receiving end is stressful, even more so when you throw compliance into the mix. I figured since I have been fielding questions left and right about what to do when it comes to mobile applications and HIPAA compliance, I would simply write a blog post on the topic.

Mobile App Security Myths

I like to think about myths as common ideas that seem to perpetuate regardless of the rapid pace of technology change that is part of the modern world. When I’m out talking to folks about securing mobile apps I find that the same ideas about what enterprise security being perpetuated.

Many of the myths that I come across appear to offer panaceas that are comforting to the status quo. The idea that the newest iPhone or Samsung device will automatically make enterprise mobility safe. If enterprise data is encrypted then it is perfectly safe. If we put a wall around our apps and data then no one will be able to get in. These are comforting myths.

The Appsec Program Maturity Curve 2 of 4

As we’ve discussed, the program maturity model for Application Security has six levels. You should be able to recognize at which stage of the curve your particular organization is. The easiest one to recognize is an approach to AppSec called “Do Nothing”. Let’s assume if you are reading this, that’s not you.

If your organization is already pursuing an ad-hoc testing approach to manage the security of your software, you are not alone. Most enterprises with in-house application development teams do some kind of ad hoc AppSec testing, usually during the software QA process. Most organizations who understand the fundamental importance of AppSec start here.

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