I don’t know about you at the tail end of the Summer of 2016, but I am really missing the daily breakfast review of the performances at the Olympics this week; and sitting down early evening engrossed in sports I have not seen in exactly four years. In my own head I’m nodding along at the scoring system in Taekwondo, being my own annoyed pundit half a second before the TV sports commentator say something blindingly obvious “Ohh, she should not have done that, the judges will mark her down.”
At the official start of summertime 2016 in Britain we are starting to consume the labor of last autumn, five gallons of alcoholic homemade cider (yum!) made from eight apple varieties grown in mine and my neighbors’ gardens. I’m very VERY careful sterilizing glassware, containers, and buckets: there was this unfortunate incident three years ago (no, you don’t want to hear the horrible details), enough to say I watch each step like a hawk to ensure a batch does not become tainted.
Why am I bothering you with my alcoholic side-line?
The Growing Linux Wave: POINTS TO DEMAND FOR IDENTITY AND ACCESS MANAGEMENT SOLITIONS
According to a Linux Foundation’s end-user trends report, Linux leads the way in enterprise deployments. Fox Technologies conducted a survey to find out how enterprises currently manage their Linux servers and their plans in the next year. The results point to an increasing demand for identity and access management (IAM) solutions.
Fox Technologies’ acquisition of GroundWork advances its mission in being an innovative leader in infrastructure and security management.
GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Wednesday, February 17, 2016 — Fox Technologies, Inc., a portfolio company of Parallax Capital Partners, today announced its acquisition of GroundWork Open Source Inc. Based in San Francisco, GroundWork provides unified monitoring solutions for IT operations management, performance analysis, and cloud monitoring. GroundWork allows customers the flexibility to leverage the advantages of open source while simultaneously preserving existing investments in legacy IT management tools.
SSH Management has been in the press a lot the last 2 years.
Sponsored reports from analysts have focused on poor key and SSH management practices, a highly speculative assertion that Edward Snowden somehow used keys to gain access to systems (which he denies), and now the US NIST has published a document that, among other things, puts a focus on ‘automated authentication’ used for application-to-application (app2app) or system-to-system/computer-to-computer (c2c) communications.
NIST now recommends that the same level of focus and account management that has been recommended for year for interactive (people) accounts be placed on these automated accounts. Continue reading
Unix & Linux Control
Controlling what someone can do once they have accessed a Unix or Linux server within your environment is a goal for every systems administrator and security analyst to set their sights on.
System admins have a purpose to allowing other users of the system only limited access; users mess things up, and that know that. It could be anything from a noob (or novice administrator) who oversteps their knowledge, or it could be an application developer running a script with root privileges that does something like ‘rm -rf */*’. No sys admin wants to have to explain how that happened, or clean up the mess. Continue reading
Identity Access Management (IAM)
I just read a recent article about IAM (Identity Access Management) projects, and the level of complication that can ensue when trying to plan and implement a project of the scale and scope that a comprehensive IAM project entails.
The theme of the article is that AD (Active Directory), in many enterprises, is the identity store of choice; the idea being that if you could align your enterprise to use a single account, there is an economy of scale, reducing the number of places where access and permissions would need to be managed. Continue reading
Network and Data Security Breaches Are Rising Exponentially
IIn today’s environment of massive data security breaches organizations more than ever need to deploy a defense in depth.
Firewalls no longer are enough to keep hackers out and prevent breaches. Threats can emanate from all directions, and often the first foothold an attacker can get is on a common desktop or laptop of an unsuspecting person who opens an e-mail attachment or visits a malicious website. Defending these systems is hard, but must be attempted. However, in the face of much evidence these systems will remain vulnerable and continue to be the source of many breaches. It is what happens next that must be considered and prepared for.
After the initial successful breach, the goal of an attacker will be to widen their foothold in an organization until they have compromised the valued data, or have control over the valued systems. Attackers spread themselves through additional systems through lateral attacks, jumping from one machine to the next until they can reach their goal. Each step is an opportunity to prevent or detect the attack, or prevent or detect the next attack.
For these reasons layers of security are required to find and prevent each link in the chain of attack. Continue reading
Fox Technologies announces high-tech industry sales veteran, Bryan Short, as new VP of Sales.
GRAND RAPIDS, MI — January 13th, 2016 — Fox Technologies Inc., a portfolio company of Parallax Capital Partners and leader in Linux system access management solutions, announces the appointment of Bryan Short as vice president of sales. Short is a high-tech industry veteran with over 25 years of experience in sales, marketing, and business operations leadership. He will be responsible for strengthening Fox Technologies’ existing customer relationships, driving national sales strategies to generate demand and achieve revenue targets, and expanding reach into global markets.
Secure Shell (SSH) Data Security
The Ponemon Institute and Forrester have both published studies that have raised a lot of attention, and questioned the security of SSH deployments, and both focus on the implementation practices and procedures. The ugly truth is that this vital tool is often little considered in the security plans of many enterprises.
The focus of both of these studies is on SSH key management. This can certainly be a very important topic, especially with a standard/default SSH implementation: if you need to use SSH user-keys for authentication it becomes enabled for all accounts that have access to the system. Continue reading