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Security in Context: The BeyondTrust Blog

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

Sudo May Be For Sandwiches But Not Your Enterprise

Posted December 14, 2010    Peter McCalister

Sudo has been one of the Unix/Linux administrator and self-designated geek’s best friend for the last two decades, but it probably isn’t right for your enterprise.  For one thing, it’s open source software, which means no one company can be held accountable for bug fixes, enhancements or any liability resulting from flaws in design.  Being a software guy, I naturally lean towards licensed code and have even written on the subject of licensed code versus freeware.  So it begs the question, “What can I use sudo for safely?”  I just love the t-shirts atThinkGeek.com because they told me what sudo is actually good for… ordering sandwiches!

In all seriousness, though, many Information Technology (IT) professionals believe that by implementing sudo across their enterprise, they are now protected from the intentional, accidental and indirect misuse of privilege.  Unfortunately, that is not the case, as anyone with a browser and the keywords “sudo breach,” “sudo tricks” or “sudo hack” will learn.   If you have three minutes to spare, there is even a YouTube video to show you how in step-by-step instructions for the Guy Hawkes Hack.

We have spent some time on this in ealier posts.  For a refresh, check out 6 Things You Should Know About Sudo.

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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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