I have been through hundreds of penetration tests over the last few years, both on the testing side and on the "defending" side. Actually, in many cases I'm doing routine, internal security testing on apps that then go through a 3rd party pentest, so I can compare their results with mine. It's probably not very surprising that BurpSuite is the tool of choice for almost everyone, because it's reliable, feature-rich and well priced — £199 per year in this business is really cheap.
Content Security Policy violation reports are usually very helpful in not only debugging your security policy, but actually for building it from scratch. There's however one case when they can be quite annoying...
Spending two weeks in Russia I had an opportunity to look at how their Internet censorship system operates in practice. As human rights watchdogs alarmed already, the scope of blocked websites now goes way beyond the typical criminal content declared initially by the government and now routinely includes political content. The good news is that the system is still easily bypassable even by an unexperienced user.
Looking for a Twitter API library that would work with Python 3 I stumbled upon a number of projects that implement OAuth authentication protocol in a rather superfulous way (but "baroque" would be a better word here).
Emerging Threats publishes excellent, free IP blacklists for general usage at servers and routers, in formats suitable for use with iptables and other popular firewalls. Unfortunately, on low memory and small CPU devices, loading ~1.5k iptables rules is a performance killer — here's how to do this more efficiently using ipset.
Play Framework comes equipped with a pretty complete object-relational mapping (ORM) features to enable fast and easy exchange of data between web forms and database models. As usual, with fast and easy comes the risk of abuse and Play is no exception here.
Back in 2009 the European Commission raised a controversial proposal to grant consumer rights to software users, much like those applying to cars or other "physical" goods.With recent Heartbleed failure of OpenSSL it's likely that these populist proposals will appear again. Why wasn't that good idea?
8 April 2014 is a busy day for sysadmins. Everyone is patching CVE-2014-0160 and I can actually see this in realtime — servers that were vulnerable in the morning, no longer expose their data in the afternoon. This is not really frequent that a vulnerability is treated so seriously, but in this case it's fully justified.
New electronic signature directive named "Electronic identification and trust services for electronic transactions in the internal market" (eIDAS) has been now voted in favour at the European Parliament.
Does Play Framework need ESAPI at all? It is pretty robust as it comes to automatic escaping of potential cross-site scripting vectors but if you don't use Play templates to display data (but an AJAX API instead) you'll need to do this separately. Play also offers a quite good validation framework but you still need to actually implement the validation functions for some types of content — and here's where OWASP ESAPI comes handy.