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Security in Context: The BeyondTrust Blog

Welcome to Security in Context

Bringing you news and commentary on solutions and strategies for protecting critical IT infrastructure in the context of your business.

Looking At Security From The Inside Out With Least Privilege

Posted July 5, 2011    Peter McCalister

Many organizations have invested heavily in perimeter security, helping to protect against hackers and outside threats, but very few have addressed the weak link in the security chain. Users with excessive privileges are that weak link, and allowing users to make security decisions can have disastrous consequences.

Over the past several months, we have seen news articles describing more and more malware that is posing as legitimate software updates and anti-virus software. Once installed by the end user, the malware will infect a machine and then attempt to extort money from the end user to purchase the bogus fix for the infection. The main goal of the malware is to coerce users to give up their credit card details for the fix to remove the problem application. Recently, an article from PCWorld highlighted one such malware attack that leaves a machine running a Firefox browser potentially vulnerable to this malware.

In the comments section, a user emphatically discusses the importance to run as a standard user, not an administrator. Most malware of this type requires administrator privileges to install and get its hooks so deeply into the operating system. If more organizations removed administrator privileges from users, and if more home users ran without administrator privileges for day to day use, malware would have a much harder time infiltrating a system.

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Additional articles

PowerBroker for Unix & Linux helps prevent Shellshock

Posted September 25, 2014    Paul Harper

Like many other people who tinker with UNIX and Linux on a regular basis, BASH has always been my shell of choice.  Dating back to the early days moving from Windows to a non-Windows platform, mapping the keys correctly to allow easy navigation and control helped ensure an explosion of use for the shell. Unfortunately,…

Bash “Shellshock” Vulnerability – Retina Updates

Posted September 24, 2014    BeyondTrust Research Team

A major vulnerability was recently discovered within bash which allows arbitrary command execution via specially crafted environment variables. This is possible due to the fact that bash supports the assignment of shell functions to shell variables. When bash parses environment shell functions, it continues parsing even after the closing brace of the function definition. If…

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7 Reasons Customers Switch to Password Safe for Privileged Password Management

Posted September 24, 2014    Chris Burd

It’s clear that privileged password management tools are essential for keeping mission-critical data, servers and assets safe and secure. However, as I discussed in my previous post, there are several pitfalls to look out for when deploying a privileged password management solution. At this point, you may be wondering how BeyondTrust stacks up. With that,…

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