TLS Authentication of LDAP sessions:
Till now all the sessions made by the LDAP client to the server is open and not encrypted. Its time to make our LDAP client-server sessions encrypted by some mechanisms. The most common encryption method includes Transport Layer Security (TLS) and/or Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption.
Here, we are using own Certificate Authority (CA) and then create and sign our LDAP server certificate as that CA. The first step in the process is to obtain or create a certificate. Because slapd is compiled using the gnutls library, the certtool utility will be used to create certificates. Now we install the gnutls-bin package by running the following command as root from the LDAP server:
root@ubuntuserver:]# apt-get install gnutls-bin
(Click To Enlarge Screenshots)
After the package is installed, we create a private key for the Certificate Authority (CA) by the following command:
root@ubuntuserver:]# sh -c “certtool –generate-privkey > /etc/ssl/private/cakey.pem”
The –generate-privkey option generates a private key and it is saved to file /etc/ssl/private/cakey.pem.
Now we create a template file /etc/ssl/ca.info to define the CA with the following entries as shown below:
root@ubuntuserver:]# : vi /etc/ssl/ca.info
cn = Support Sages
Now create the self-signed CA certificate using the following command:
root@ubuntuserver:]# certtool –generate-self-signed –load-privkey /etc/ssl/private/cakey.pem \
–template /etc/ssl/ca.info –outfile /etc/ssl/certs/cacert.pem
Note that we are using the –template option to pass the template file /etc/ssl/ca.info created before to define the template for our self-signed CA. The –load-privkey loads the CA private key file cakey.pem which we created earlier and the –outfile option creates the required self-signed CA cert /etc/ssl/certs/cacert.pem
Now make a private key for the LDAP server by:
root@ubuntuserver:]# certtool –generate-privkey –outfile /etc/ssl/private/ldapserver.int.sages.com_slapd_key.pem
Replace ldapserver.int.sages.com in the slapd key filename with your server’s hostname.
To sign the server’s certificate with the CA, create the /etc/ssl/ldapserver.int.sages.com.info info file containing:
root@ubuntuserver:]# : vi /etc/ssl/ldapserver.int.sages.com.info
organization = Support Sages
cn = ldapserver.int.sages.com
expiration_days = 3650
The expiration_days attribute define the number of days the cert is valid. The above certificate is good for 10 years.(Rough calculation)
Replace canonical name cn ldapserver.int.sages.com with your server’s hostname.
And now we create the server certificate with the following command:
root@ubuntuserver:]# certtool –generate-certificate –load-privkey /etc/ssl/private/ldapserver.int.sages.com_slapd_key.pem \
–load-ca-certificate /etc/ssl/certs/cacert.pem –load-ca-privkey /etc/ssl/private/cakey.pem \
–template /etc/ssl/ldapserver.int.sages.com.info –outfile /etc/ssl/certs/ldapserver.int.sages.com_slapd_cert.pem
In the above command we pass the template file ldapserver.int.sages.com.info using the –template option to define the template for our server cert as we did for creating our self-signed CA. The –load-privkey loads the servers private key file ldapserver.int.sages.com_slapd_key.pem which we created earlier, –load-ca-privkey loads our CA private key , –load-ca-certificate option passes the CA cert cacert.pem and the –outfile option creates the cert /etc/ssl/certs/ldapserver.int.sages.com_slapd_cert.pem.
Now we have a certificate, key, and CA cert installed. Use ldapmodify command to add the new configuration options to slapd tree. As we know that ldapmodify is a command to modify our DIT and we use LDIF file format for this. So we create an LDIF file certinfo.ldif with the following entries:
root@ubuntuserver:]# : vi certinfo.ldif
Note that the certificate file names should be configured correctly in the above file with respect to the certs you created for your hostname.
Now we use the ldapmodify command to add the data to the cn=config DIT and tell slapd that our TLS work via the slapd-config(cn=config) database.
root@ubuntuserver:]# ldapmodify -Q -Y EXTERNAL -H ldapi:/// -f certinfo.ldif
You can see an output as shown below:
modifying entry “cn=config”
Once this is done make usre that the follwing entry is uncomented in /etc/default/slapd file:
Contrary to our popular belief, we do not need ldaps:// in /etc/default/slapd in order to use TLS encryption. You should have just:
LDAP over TLS works using StartTLS. STARTTLS is an extension to plain text communication protocols, which offers a way to upgrade a plain text connection to an encrypted (TLS or SSL) connection instead of using a separate port for encrypted communication. So here an existing LDAP session (listening on TCP port 389) becoming protected by TLS/SSL. Whereas LDAPS, like HTTPS, is a distinct encrypted-from-the-start protocol that operates over TCP port 636. We are using STARTLS for our encryption.
Now its time to set permissions and ownerships for our certificate files such that the openldap user gets access to these certificates:
root@ubuntuserver:]# adduser openldap ssl-cert
At times you will get an error mesasge as given below while excecuting the adduser command:
adduser: The group `ssl-cert’ does not exist.
To overcome this install the package ssl-cert by:
root@ubuntuserver:]# apt-get install ssl-cert
This installs the ssl-cert package which creates the ssl-cert group automatically. Now excecute the adduser command:
root@ubuntuserver:]# adduser openldap ssl-cert
Run the following commands to change the group and permissions:
root@ubuntuserver:]# chgrp ssl-cert /etc/ssl/private/ldapserver.int.sages.com_slapd_key.pem
root@ubuntuserver:]# chmod g+r /etc/ssl/private/ldapserver.int.sages.com_slapd_key.pem
Now restart slapd by:
root@ubuntuserver:]# /etc/init.d/slapd restart
If slapd restarts fine, then we can make sure that the TLS configurations are fine. Or if you run into troubles with the server not starting, check the /var/log/syslog. If you see errors like main: TLS init def ctx failed: -1, it is likely there is a configuration problem. Check that the certificate is signed by the authority from in the files configured, and that the ssl-cert group has read permissions on the private key.
Now we should configure our LDAP server to use TLS by editing the /etc/ldap/ldap.conf file as shown below:
Now we should make our client use TLS authentication. This can be done by editing the configuration file /etc/ldap.conf on the LDAP client machine:
[ldapclient@ubuntuserver:]# vi /etc/ldap.conf
Make sure the following entries are uncommented :
These two entries in ldap.conf makes the client use TLS certs for encrypted sessions with our LDAP server. Lets check whether the session is using TLS using ldapsearch command.
You can use the ZZ switch to the ldapsearch utility to see if we are using encrypted sessions.
[ldapclient@ubuntuserver:]# ldapsearch -xZZ -h ldapserver.int.sages.com
(-x disables SASL authentication, -Z tells to start TLS request (-ZZ to require successful response) , -h defines the hostname of our LDAP server)
But this command returns an error as show below:
ldapsearch -xZZ -h ldapserver.sages.com
ldap_start_tls: Connect error (-11)
additional info: (unknown error code)
Note that the ldapsearch is an ldap utility which we got when we installed ldap-utils package. And the ldap-utils uses /etc/ldap/ldap.conf file. So make sure the following entries are there in /etc/ldap/ldap.conf on LDAP client :
Now run the ldapsearch from the LDAP client as follows:
[ldapclient@ubuntuserver:]# ldapsearch -xZZ -h ldapserver.int.sages.com
You will see all our LDAP users from our LDAP server. If all the users are listed while using the -ZZ switch with ldapsearch command we can make sure that the session is encrypted for that listed users.Continue Reading
What is SSL
SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) is a cryptographic protocol which ensure the security of communication over the Internet. SSL encrypt the segments of network connections above the Transport Layer, using symmetric cryptography for privacy and a keyed message authentication code for message reliability.
How SSL works
Web servers and Web browsers rely on the SSL protocol to create a unique encrypted channel for private communications over the Internet. The SSL Certificate consists of a public key and a private key. The public key is used to encrypt information and the private key is used to decrypt it. When a Web browser points to a domain which is secured by SSL, a level of encryption is established based on the type of SSL Certificate as well as the client Web browser, operating system and host server’s capabilities. This is why SSL certificates feature a different range of encryption levels.
Obtaining an SSL Certificate
Domain example.com needs an SSL Certificate. The following steps are involved in it :
a) Example.com generates a CSR (Certificate Signing Request) and during this process, a private key is generated.
b) With this CSR, Example.com goes to a trusted, third party Certificate Authority like Verisign. They take the Certificate Signing Request and validates example.com. The Certificate Authority validates example.com.
c) When the validation process is complete, the third party Certificate Authority gives a new public key (certificate) encrypted with their private key.
d) Example.com installs the new certificate and gets secured.
(i) Through cPanel/WHM
Its quite easy to install SSL through cPanel/WHM interface.
Under Security tab, click SSL/TLS Manager.
Generate the Private Keys first by accessing the option Generate, view, upload or delete your private keys
Access the option Generate, view, or delete SSL certificate signing requests. Fill in the forms like Domain Name, E-mail Address, Country etc.
You will obtain the CSR. Contact the Certificate provider with this information. The Certificate Authority will then provide the Certificate (CRT). Finally you will have the following files associated with SSL :
CSR in the format domain.com.csr or domain_com.csr
CA bundle, which have the Public key of the Certificate Authority in the format domain.com.cabundle or domain_com.ca-bundle
CRT, the certificate in the format domain.com.crt or domain_com.crt
Private key in the format domain.com.key or domain_com.key
Method 1 : Installing from cPanel
1. Go to SSL/TLS Manager.
2. Click Generate, view, upload, or delete your private keys.
3. Under the Upload a New Certificate section, click on the Browse button (next to Choose a .crt file option) and find the Domain Certificate file (example.crt) that you obtained from the SSL vendor. Alternatively you can paste the Certificate contents on the section Paste the crt below. Make sure to include the BEGIN and END tags, while copying your certificate. Click the Upload button.
4. Go Back and click Return to SSL Manager at the bottom of the page.
5. Click on Setup a SSL certificate to work with your site. If this option is not available, your web host may have disabled it. You will need to contact them for further support.
6. Now, select the domain you are using from the Domain drop down menu. It will attempt to fetch the SSL Certificate and the private key. If this doesn’t work, you may need to contact your web host.
7. In the box labeled CA Bundle paste the contents of the Intermediate certificate (DigiCertCA.crt).
8. Click Install Certificate. Your SSL certificate should now be installed, and the website configured to accept secure connections. You or your web host may need to restart Apache before it will work.
Method 2 : Installing from WHM
You can install SSL certificate from WHM also. Its quite simple when compared to the installation through cPanel. All you need is the root access to WHM. Once you login to the WHM, search for the option Install a SSL Certificate and Setup the Domain.
You’ll find three boxes. Paste the CRT file contents in the first box. It will automatically fetch the Key and CA Bundle (In most cases, CA bundle needs to be fetched manually). Finally click Submit once all the fields are populated. You’ll see a message that indicates the installation is successful
Method 3 : Manual Installation
You need the Server Root shell access for this. Go to the Apache configuration file in the server, in the cPanel case its /usr/local/apache/conf/httpd.conf. Locate the VirtualHost entry configured for SSL. Configure it like :
<VirtualHost xxx.xxx.x.xx:443> ServerName example.com ServerAlias www.example.com DocumentRoot /home/example/public_html SSLEngine on SSLCertificateFile /usr/share/ssl/certs/example.com.crt SSLCertificateKeyFile /usr/share/ssl/private/example.com.key SSLCACertificateFile /usr/share/ssl/certs/example.com.cabundle </VirtualHost>
where SSLCertificateFile is the SSL certificate file path, SSLCertificateKeyFile is the Key file path, SSLCACertificateFile is the path to the Intermediate file. Make sure you’ve the files in the specified path (It may vary on different scenarios). Restart the Web server and you’re done.Continue Reading
DDoS – Distributed Denial Of Service Wiki : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denial-of-service_attack
DDoS is an attack on a computer/server or its resources and thereby making it unavailable to intended users.
Web-hosts must be familiar with this term and will be a victim at-least once. The intention of this post is to give a brief description about DDoS, its prevention and cure if effected. Please note that this will not server as a perfect guide to the mentioned “Subject-line”, but a “tip-note”.
The four commonly used programs used by attackers to launch DDoS attacks are
Symptoms of DDos:
How DDoS is done:
Pictorial representation of Stacheldraht DDoS attack.
In Stacheldraht DDoS attack, the attacker uses a client program to connect handlers which is a set of compromised machines that issues commands to the agents which in-turn facilitate the DDoS attack. The agents are another set of machines which is compromised using handlers by the attacker. Each handler can control thousands of agents and all these widely distributed agents floods the target server and thereby increasing the impact of attack.
DoS and DDoS are not the same:
If the attacker initiates an attack from a single host, it is classified as a DoS as it is not ‘distributed’. In fact, any attack against availability would be classed as a Denial of Service attack. On the other hand, if an attacker uses a thousand systems to simultaneously launch smurf attacks against a remote host, this would be classified as a DDoS attack.
Then what is DRDoS? DRDoS is Distributed Refected Denial of Service. These attacks forge the source address of the IP packets with the victim’s IP and send pings/packets to intermediate hosts. When the intermediate sends back the reply to these pings , it is sent to the victims IP thereby flooding the victim.
Some other types/methods of DDoS/DRDoS/Dos attacks are :
Reflective ICMP attack: The reflective ICMP attack uses public sites like google.com that responds to ICMP ping requests to that of victims IP. The attacker spoofs the victims IP and send requests to the Public servers which will then reply to the actual IP.
TCP SYN flood attack : The attacker sends a packet with SYS bit set of the well known TCP three way handshake. The victim responds to the request by sendong a reply packet with SYN_ACK bit set, but the attackr never responds and thereby increasing the TCP receive queues and denying new TCP connetions. But modern UNIX and Windows fixed this by increasing the queue qize and limited the number of TCP SYS packets allowed.
UDP attacks : The UDP is one of the most effective way of DDos/DoS attacks. UDP is a stateless protocol and does not have any acknowledgement mechanism by design. PROTOS,the SNMP test suite, and other SNMP tools have been used successfully to launch application level DoS attacks. The Slammer worm was extremely fast because it did not require a response from the compromised computer.
TTL Expiration : The attacker forges the victims IP and send packets with low TTL set to it so that it will expire in the transmit at high speed router. When the TTL reaches zero, the router drops the packet and sends an ICMP TTL expired message to the source address, ie the Victim IP. This attack could be lowered by rate limiting ICMP to all routers in the service provider’s network.
Permanent DoS attacks (PDoS) : PDoS is an attack that damages the system so badly that it needs the hardware to be replaced or reinstalled. The PDoS is purely a hardware targeted attack in which the attacker modifies the devide fireware by the legitimate method caled flashing. The attacker replaces the hardware firmware with his own modified version which will make the device unstable and render it from the original purpose for which it is made or designed for. The is done by exploiting the hardware security flaws which will allow remote administration of devices such as routers, printers and other networking hardwares.
Degradation Of Service Attacks : The compromised computers are used by the atackers to launch short-lived flooding on victims website which will slow down the website rather than crashing it. This is degradation of service rather than deniel of service and is more seriver than DoS as this is pretty difficult to detect and resolve.
Un-intentional Denial Of Services : Sudden spike in popularity for a website is the major cause for this. This happens when an extremely popular wesite posts a link to a second site as a part of referrence for news or article. This will lead significant increase in traffic to the secondary website which will result in crashing or server/services. An example for this hapened when Michael Jackson died in 2009 which took down sites like Google and Twitter. (In this case you cant just blame someone )
Blind Denial Of Service : In Blind Deniel of Service, the attacker must be able to receive traffic from the victim, then the attacker must either subvert the routing fabric or use the attacker’s own IP address. Either provides an opportunity for the victim to track the attacker and/or filter out his traffic. With a blind attack the attacker uses a forged IP addresses, making it extremely difficult for the victim to filter out those packets. The TCP SYN flood attack is an example of a blind attack. Designers should make every attempt possible to prevent blind denial of service attacks.
A continuation of the previous exploits. http://isec.pl/vulnerabilities/isec-0025-syscall-emulation.txt
Details about the 0 day exploit and how to test whether your system is exploitable or not. However no need to get panicked as this particular exploit was with l33t hackers for last 2 years as you can see at the above link. Now since it is public now, take an extra care if uname -m gives you a x86_64.
Two CVE candidates are there – CVE-2010-3081 and CVE-2010-3301. One will affect the server and other don’t.
Temporary solution would be to follow https://access.redhat.com/kb/docs/DOC-40265Continue Reading
How many times have you written scripts and a had bad time with those having spaces? The remedy to this situation is your IFS value.
IFS or Internal Field Seperator holds the value which seperates the various entities. This can be file names, values read into a script by read etc. It is the character or characters designated as whitespace by the operating system.
The IFS is set to the newline and space character. The global variable $IFS stores the value. To view the exact value stored in IFS execute:
echo "$IFS" | cat -vTE ^I$ $
Running echo “$IFS” will not give you any visible output (after all, you are going to see a space and a newline). cat -vTE displays non printable characters , tabs as ^I and ends each line with a $ sign.
In a script which utilises filenames (with spaces), it is always preferable to change the IFS to include only the newline character opposed to the default space and newline character. Lets check out one such script which accepts filenames wih spaces. This scripts simply prints the file names in your current directory. (Remember to create some files in your currenct directory which has spaces. You may try the same script removing the lines with the IFS variable in reference to see the difference)
#!/bin/bash OIFS=$IFS # Original IFS IFS=$(echo -en "\n\b") # New IFS for fil in $(ls -1 $PWD); do echo $fil done IFS=$OIFS # Restore earlier IFS
IFS can also be used to read files with lines sepearated by a special character. For example in the /etc/passwd, to store the various entries like username, homedirectory etc.
The following script uses the while construct to determine the users who have the shell portion as /bin/false
#!/bin/bash OIFS=$IFS IFS=':' while read username password userid groupid comments homedir shell_avail do if [[ $shell_avail == /bin/false ]]; then echo "$username has no shell" fi done < /etc/passwd IFS=$OIFS
In the above script each of the 7 portions of the /etc/passwd file is assigned to the 7 variables
username password userid groupid comments homedir shell_avail with the read command. The if portion in the script compares the seventh variable – shell_avail to /bin/false to determine the username and outputs it.
From now on you can use the IFS variable for all those files with spaces and extracting values separated by a special character.Continue Reading