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A WAF for the Other Half

A WAF for the Other Half FIG_1.png

The other half asks "May I please have some more (application security)."

Another lifetime ago, way back in 2014, I wrote that "updating WAF rules is like flossing, everybody knows they should be doing it but it can be an easy step to forget and difficult to find the time to do it." At the time my conclusion was something along the lines of "so if you don't have time to do it, you should pay someone to do it for you".  In hindsight that conclusion was flawed for two reasons:  First my analogy at that point got a little bit weird - who in their right mind would let someone else floss their teeth for them?  By the same token, what if you don't trust a 3rd party to update your rules for you?  Some security professionals, quite rightfully, probably take better care of their apps than they take care of their own teeth, and they are perfectly able, thank you very much, of taking care of their apps and their WAF rules themselves.  Some of the larger eCommerce companies and banks, for instance, have teams of 4, 5 or even 6 full time employees studying WAF rules, tuning configurations, and generally making sure that the bad guys are kept out while the good guys get through to their websites unmolested.  Second, even if you are comfortable with someone else flossing your teeth or updating your rules, what if you can't afford to pay someone else to do it for you?

WordPress Web API Vulnerability

On Tuesday, February 1, 2017, security vendor Sucuri disclosed a severe vulnerability in the WordPress REST API in versions prior to 4.7.2. The vulnerability allows for remote, unauthenticated and easily automated modification of blog post and page content by manipulating a parameter payload.  Sucuri, Inc. notified Akamai of this vulnerability in advance of the public disclosure, which allowed the Threat Research team to internally confirm exploitability and to develop a new rule for Kona Site Defender designed to protect customers from this vulnerability.  It's important to understand the new Wordpress REST API before we discuss the technical details of the vulnerability.

Many customers ask Akamai about Disaster Recovery testing and Business Continuity planning as a part of their due diligence or risk management process. Customers expect to see a governance document maintained by a central authority, a list of systems with Recovery Point Objectives (RPO), Recovery Time Objectives (RTO), and a documented testing plan that is enacted quarterly or annually. Akamai reframes these questions to better match our approach to continuity and recovery, all of which we include under the umbrella of "resilience."

Improving Credential Abuse Threat Mitigation

Have you ever tried to login to your favorite website and mistakenly typed the wrong user name and password once, or even twice? I bet you have. And what about submitting a third consecutive false attempt? In most cases, at that point a secure website will start questioning the integrity of your actions. 

From a defense point of view, websites should suspend and limit false login attempts to confirm authenticity once abnormal usage is detected.

JAR: What You Need To Know

On December 29th, the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT), in coordination with the FBI, released a document outlining  recent attacks against US interests that have been attributed to the Russian government.  To be clear, Akamai does not comment on the attribution of attacks. Rather we would like to inform our customers of what a reasonable, informed course of action should be regarding this new information.

The Year of Attacking "Things"

Yearly Review

2016 was an exciting year; a year in which hazards related to the Intent of Things (IoT) became trendy small talk in many living rooms around the world. For us, the members of the InfoSec community, it was the year when the security risks of IoT devices evolved from being theoretical to becoming a practical problem to us all. It was the year in which we all realized that the lack of security surrounding IoT is not just a liability on the consumer owning the device, it is a problem for the entire Internet.

In the first of this two-part blog, I reported the impact that the Dyn DDoS attack had on the financial services industry.  Banks, insurers, credit cards, and others had two waves of impacts on Oct. 21, with many websites clocking in with 60 second page response times, and others with outright failures, not able to service their customers.

In Part 2, we'll dig into some details to better understand the technology risks of financial services websites, and extract some lessons learned for the industry.

Prepare for the Worst, Hope for the Best

Leading up to the U.S Presidential Election last week, the oracles of the security world were warning of all the possible types of attacks we might see during the day of decision making.  We were preparing for attacks against voting machines, disinformation spread through social media platforms, more email leaks, and above all Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks against everyone from the White House to news sites around the globe.  Yet none of these seem to have materialized.

The SOTI Q3 and Hordes of Savage Barbarian IoT

Each quarter the Akamai team delves into the volumes of data that we have at our disposal. Every time we do so we find something new and exciting, and this last quarter was by no means an exception. You might have heard of a little botnet called Mirai that set the Internet on its ear during the month of October.

Yes, My Name is ||

Boolean Operator

Different cultures and nationalities have different naming conventions; I came from a one that led me to face the universe with a personal name "Or". I fact, my name has different meanings in different languages. In English the meaning of "Or" is function word that indicate alternatives and in computer coding languages the name "Or" is being used as Boolean operator that enable us to write conditions in our code.