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The Hacker News - Cybersecurity News and Analysis: Open Source

Google Offers Financial Support to Open Source Projects for Cybersecurity

Google Offers Financial Support to Open Source Projects for Cybersecurity
December 18, 2019Mohit Kumar
Besides rewarding ethical hackers from its pocket for responsibly reporting vulnerabilities in third-party open-source projects, Google today announced financial support for open source developers to help them arrange additional resources, prioritizing the security of their products. The initiative, called " Patch Rewards Program ," was launched nearly 6 years ago, under which Google rewards hackers for reporting severe flaws in many widely used open source software, including OpenSSH, OpenSSL, Linux kernel, Apache, Nginx, jQuery, and OpenVPN. So far, Google has paid hundreds of thousands of dollars as bounty to hackers across the world who helped improve the overall security of many crucial open source software and technologies that power the Internet, operating systems, and networks. The company has now also decided to motivate volunteer work done by the open source community by providing upfront financial help to project teams, using which they can acquire addition

Unpatched Prototype Pollution Flaw Affects All Versions of Popular Lodash Library

Unpatched Prototype Pollution Flaw Affects All Versions of Popular Lodash Library
July 09, 2019Mohit Kumar
Lodash, a popular npm library used by more than 4 million projects on GitHub alone, is affected by a high severity security vulnerability that could allow attackers to compromise the security of affected services using the library and their respective user base. Lodash is a JavaScript library that contains tools to simplify programming with strings, numbers, arrays, functions, and objects, helping programmers write and maintain their JavaScript code more efficiently. Liran Tal, a developer advocate at open-source security platform Snyk, recently published details and proof-of-concept exploit of a high-severity prototype pollution security vulnerability that affects all versions of lodash, including the latest version 4.17.11. The vulnerability, assigned as CVE-2019-10744 , potentially affects a large number of frontend projects due to the popularity of lodash that is being downloaded at a rate of more than 80 million times per month. Prototype pollution is a vulnerability t

WhiteSource Bolt for GitHub: Free Open Source Vulnerability Management App for Developers

WhiteSource Bolt for GitHub: Free Open Source Vulnerability Management App for Developers
December 05, 2018Wang Wei
Developers around the world depend on open source components to build their software products. According to industry estimates, open source components account for 60-80% of the code base in modern applications. Collaboration on open source projects throughout the community produces stronger code, squashing the bugs and catching the vulnerabilities that impact the security of organizations who look to open source components as the key to their application building success. Thanks in part to the "thousand eyeballs" of the community, the number of reported vulnerabilities in open source projects is on the rise, spiking 51% in 2017 from the previous year. This is even more concerning since, as shown in the same study, most vulnerabilities are found in popular projects. Data shows that 32% of the top 100 open source projects have at least one vulnerability, meaning that developers have their work cut out for them, no matter which components they are using in their products.

Linus Torvalds Apologizes For His Rude Behavior—Takes Time Off

Linus Torvalds Apologizes For His Rude Behavior—Takes Time Off
September 18, 2018Wang Wei
What just happened would definitely gonna surprise you. Linus Torvalds—father of the Linux open-source operating system—finally admitted his behavior towards other developers in the Linux community was hurting people and Linux. In a surprising move this weekend, Torvalds apologized for insulting and abusing other developers for almost three decades and took a break from the open-source software to work on his behavior. In an email to the Linux Kernel Mailing List (LKML) on Sunday, Torvalds said that he was confronted by people of the Linux community this week about his lifetime of not understanding emotions, and apologized for his personal behavior that has hurt people and possibly has driven some of them away from working in kernel development altogether. Torvalds wrote, "I need to change some of my behavior, and I want to apologize to the people that my personal behavior hurt and possibly drove away from kernel development entirely." "I am going to take

Facebook Open Sources Fizz — TLS 1.3 Library For Speed and Security

Facebook Open Sources Fizz — TLS 1.3 Library For Speed and Security
August 07, 2018Mohit Kumar
Facebook has open sourced Fizz—a library designed to help developers implement TLS 1.3 protocol with all recommended security and performance related configurations. Since late last month, Google Chrome web browser has started marking all non-HTTPS websites as 'Not Secure' in an effort to make the web a more secure place, forcing website administrators to switch to HTTPS. TLS 1.3 is the newest and most secure cryptographic protocol of the Transportation Layer Security (TLS), the successor to Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), which encrypts data in transit between clients and servers to prevent data theft or tampering. To make internet traffic more secure, TLS 1.3 incorporates several new features like encrypting handshake messages to keep certificates private, redesigning the way secret keys are derived, and a zero round-trip (0-RTT) connection setup, making certain requests faster than TLS 1.2. Written in C++ 14, Fizz is a reliable and highly performant TLS library that

Critical RCE Flaw Found in OpenVPN that Escaped Two Recent Security Audits

Critical RCE Flaw Found in OpenVPN that Escaped Two Recent Security Audits
June 22, 2017Swati Khandelwal
A security researcher has found four vulnerabilities, including a critical remote code execution bug, in OpenVPN, those were not even caught in the two big security audits of the open source VPN software this year. OpenVPN is one of the most popular and widely used open source VPN software solutions mostly used for various connectivity needs, but it is especially popular for anonymous and private access to the Internet. This year, two independent security audits of OpenVPN were carried out to look for flaws, backdoors, and other defects in the open source software – one conducted by a team led by Johns Hopkins University crypto-boffin Dr. Matthew D. Green. The audits resulted in a patch of a few vulnerabilities in the widely used open source software, giving OpenVPN a clean chit. Researcher Used Fuzzer to find Bugs in OpenVPN Researcher Guido Vranken of Netherlands exclusively used a fuzzer and recently discovered four security holes in OpenVPN that escaped both the secur

NSA Opens Github Account — Lists 32 Projects Developed by the Agency

NSA Opens Github Account — Lists 32 Projects Developed by the Agency
June 21, 2017Swati Khandelwal
The National Security Agency (NSA) — the United States intelligence agency which is known for its secrecy and working in the dark — has finally joined GitHub and launched an official GitHub page. The NSA employs genius-level coders and brightest mathematicians, who continually work to break codes, gather intelligence on everyone, and develop hacking tools like EternalBlu e that was leaked by the Shadow Brokers in April and abused by the WannaCry ransomware last month to wreak havoc worldwide. The intelligence agency mostly works in secret, but after Edward Snowden leaks in 2013, the NSA has started (slowly) opening itself to the world. It joined Twitter in the same year after Snowden leaks and now opened a Github account. GitHub is an online service designed for sharing code amongst programmers and open source community, and so far, the NSA is sharing 32 different projects as part of the NSA Technology Transfer Program ( TTP ), while some of these are 'coming soon.'

Microsoft is Shutting Down CodePlex, Asks Devs To Move To GitHub

Microsoft is Shutting Down CodePlex, Asks Devs To Move To GitHub
April 03, 2017Wang Wei
Microsoft has announced to shut down CodePlex -- its website for hosting repositories of open-source software projects -- on December 15, 2017. Launched in 2006, CodePlex was one of the Microsoft's biggest steps towards the world of open source community -- where any programmer, anywhere can share the code for their software or download and tweak the code to their liking. However, Microsoft says that the service has dramatically fallen in usage and that fewer than 350 projects seeing a source code commit over the last 30 days, pointing to GitHub as the "de-facto place for open source sharing." GitHub – 'Facebook for Programmers' In a blog post published Friday, Microsoft Corporate VP Brian Harry wrote that the shutdown of CodePlex is because the open source community has almost entirely moved over to GitHub, which provides similar functionality for sharing code that people can collaborate on. "Over the years, we have seen a lot of amazing opti

Google Employees Help Thousands Of Open Source Projects Patch Critical 'Mad Gadget Bug'

Google Employees Help Thousands Of Open Source Projects Patch Critical ‘Mad Gadget Bug’
March 02, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Last year Google employees took an initiative to help thousands of Open Source Projects patch a critical remote code execution vulnerability in a widely used Apache Commons Collections (ACC) library. Dubbed Operation Rosehub , the initiative was volunteered by some 50 Google employees, who utilized 20 percent of their work time to patch over 2600 open source projects on Github, those were vulnerable to "Mad Gadget vulnerability." Mad Gadget vulnerability ( CVE-2015-6420 ) is a remote code execution bug in the Java deserialization used by the Apache Commons Collections (ACC) library that could allow an unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code on a system. The ACC Library is widely deployed by many Java applications to decode data passed between computers. To exploit this flaw, all an unauthorized attacker need to do is submit maliciously crafted input to an application on a targeted system that uses the ACC library. Once the vulnerable ACC libra

Signal Messaging App Rolls Out Encrypted Video Calling

Signal Messaging App Rolls Out Encrypted Video Calling
February 14, 2017Swati Khandelwal
WhatsApp and Facebook have so far the largest end-to-end encrypted video calling network of all, but now another popular end-to-end encrypted messaging app recommended by whistleblower Edward Snowden is ready to give them a really tough competition. The Signal app, which is widely considered the most secure of all other encrypted messaging apps, released video calling feature on Tuesday for both Android and iOS in a new update. Developed by open source software group Open Whisper System, Signal is a free and open source messaging application specially designed for Android and iOS users to make secure and encrypted messages and voice calls. Even the Signal Protocol powers the end-to-end encryption built into WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Google Allo's Incognito mode as well. Signal has already been providing fully end-to-end encrypted chat and voice calling features, but the newly added feature will make it even easier for privacy conscious people to convey their inf

Microsoft Joins The Linux Foundation — Turns Love Affair Into a Relationship

Microsoft Joins The Linux Foundation — Turns Love Affair Into a Relationship
November 16, 2016Swati Khandelwal
You won't believe your eyes while reading this, but this is true. Microsoft just joined the Linux Foundation as a high-paying Platinum member. Microsoft's love with open source community is embracing as time passes. At its first Connect event in 2013, the company launched Visual Studio 2013. A year later, Microsoft open sourced .NET, and last year, it open sourced the Visual Studio Code Editor, as well. Not just that, Microsoft partnered with Canonical to bring Ubuntu on Windows 10 , worked with FreeBSD to develop a Virtual Machine image for its Azure cloud , and chosen Ubuntu as the OS for its Cloud-based Big Data services. And the big news for this year is… At its 2016 Connect developer event in New York today, Microsoft announced that the company is joining the Linux Foundation as a Platinum member – the highest level of membership, which costs $500,000 annually. Besides this, Microsoft also announced that tech giant Google has also joined on with the indepen

VeraCrypt Audit Reveals Critical Security Flaws — Update Now

VeraCrypt Audit Reveals Critical Security Flaws — Update Now
October 18, 2016Mohit Kumar
After TrueCrypt mysteriously discontinued its service, VeraCrypt became the most popular open source disk encryption software used by activists, journalists, as well as privacy conscious people. First of all, there is no such thing as a perfect, bug-free software. Even the most rigorously tested software, like the ones that operate SCADA Systems, medical devices, and aviation software, have flaws. Vulnerabilities are an unfortunate reality for every software product, but there is always space for improvements. Due to the enormous popularity of VeraCrypt, security researchers from the OSTIF (The Open Source Technology Improvement Fund) agreed to audit VeraCrypt independently and hired researchers from QuarksLab in August to lead the audit. And it seems like VeraCrypt is not exactly flawless either. Now after one month of the audit, researchers have discovered a number of security issues, including 8 critical, 3 medium, and 15 low-severity vulnerabilities in the popular

Facebook releases Osquery Security Tool for Windows

Facebook releases Osquery Security Tool for Windows
September 27, 2016Swati Khandelwal
OSquery , an open-source framework created by Facebook that allows organizations to look for potential malware or malicious activity on their networks, was available for Mac OS X and Linux environments until today. But now the social network has announced that the company has developed a Windows version of its osquery tool , too. When Facebook engineers want to monitor thousands of Apple Mac laptops across their organization, they use their own untraditional security tool called OSquery. OSquery is a smart piece of cross-platform software that scans every single computer on an infrastructure and catalogs every aspect of it. Then SQL-based queries allow developers and security teams to monitor low-level functions in real-time and quickly search for malicious behavior and vulnerable applications on their infrastructure. In simple words, OSquery allows an organization to treat its infrastructure as a database, turning OS information into a format that can be queried using SQL

Warning — You Can't Install Linux On Microsoft Signature Edition PCs from Lenovo

Warning — You Can't Install Linux On Microsoft Signature Edition PCs from Lenovo
September 21, 2016Mohit Kumar
In past few months, Microsoft opened the source code of a lot of its projects, convincing people that the company loves Linux . But a new report shows that Microsoft is not really a big supporter of Linux. Microsoft has banned Linux on some Windows 10 powered Signature Edition PCs, which provides the cleanest Windows experience on the market. Signature Edition PCs are different from other systems because it is carefully and meticulously configured by Microsoft to run Windows 10 with no bloatware, paid promotional web shortcuts, or other pre-installed apps, for providing better performance. But besides bloatware and other pre-installed apps, Microsoft won't allow you to install Linux (or any operating system) on it. This news is not a rumor as a Reddit user BaronHK reported that he found it impossible to install Linux on the Signature Edition Lenovo Yoga 900 ISK2 UltraBook because Microsoft has locked the SSD in a proprietary RAID mode that can only be read by Window

This Open Source 25-Core Processor Chip Can Be Scaled Up to 200,000-Core Computer

This Open Source 25-Core Processor Chip Can Be Scaled Up to 200,000-Core Computer
August 26, 2016Swati Khandelwal
Researchers have designed a new computer chip that promises to boost the performance of computers and data centers while processing applications in parallel. Princeton University researchers have developed a 25-core open source processor, dubbed Piton named after the metal spikes used by rock climbers, which has been designed to be flexible, highly scalable, fast and energy-efficient to satisfy the demands of massive-scale data centers. Every computer has a processor, but it's the core, a processing unit, which defines its actual efficiency and performance. A Processor can have a single core or multiple cores, which receive instructions, then performs calculations on it based on those instructions, and gives the results back. For example, the four independent processing units i.e. Cores of a quad-core processor can run multiple instructions at the same time, increasing the overall performance for applications compatible with parallel processing. Your Future Desktop

Microsoft Open Sources PowerShell; Now Available for Linux and Mac OS X

Microsoft Open Sources PowerShell; Now Available for Linux and Mac OS X
August 18, 2016Swati Khandelwal
'Microsoft loves Linux' and this has never been so true than now. Microsoft today made its PowerShell scripting language and command-line shell available to the open source developer community on GitHub under the permissive MIT license. The company has also launched alpha versions of PowerShell for Linux (specifically Red Hat, Ubuntu, and CentOS) and Mac OS X, in addition, of course, to Windows. Now, people can download binaries of the software, as well as access source code of the app from the new PowerShell GitHub page. "Users across Windows and Linux, current and new PowerShell users, even application developers can experience a rich interactive scripting language as well as a heterogeneous automation and configuration management that works well with your existing tools," Microsoft says in its blog post . "Your PowerShell skills are now even more marketable, and your Windows and Linux teams, who may have had to work separately, can now work toge

Bulgaria passes Law that mandates Government Software must be Open Source

Bulgaria passes Law that mandates Government Software must be Open Source
July 07, 2016Mohit Kumar
Do you have any idea what the software you have installed is doing stealthily in the background? If it's not an open source software, can you find out? Usually, the answer is no. After Edward Snowden's revelations, it's clear that how desperately government agencies wants to put secret backdoors in your network, devices, and software. However, Bulgaria has come forward with an all new set of laws that would be appreciated by privacy lovers and open-source community. Also Read:  Top Best Password Managers . The Bulgarian Parliament has passed legislative amendments to its Electronic Governance Act that require all software written for the country's government to be fully open-sourced and developed in the public Github repository . This means that source code of software developed for the Bulgarian government would be accessible to everyone and provided free for use without limitations. Article 58A of the Electronic Governance Act states that administrative

Facebook Open Sources its Capture the Flag (CTF) Platform

Facebook Open Sources its Capture the Flag (CTF) Platform
May 11, 2016Mohit Kumar
Hacking into computer, networks and websites could easily land you in jail. But what if you could freely test and practice your hacking skills in a legally safe environment? Facebook just open-sourced its Capture The Flag (CTF) platform to encourage students as well as developers to learn about cyber security and secure coding practices. Capture the Flag hacking competitions are conducted at various cyber security events and conferences, including Def Con, in order to highlight the real-world exploits and cyber attacks. The CTF program is an effective way of identifying young people with exceptional computer skills, as well as teaching beginners about common and advanced exploitation techniques to ensure they develop secure programs that cannot be easily compromised. Facebook  CTF Video Demo: Since 2013, Facebook has itself hosted CTF competitions at events across the world and now, it is opening the platform to masses by releasing its source code on GitHub. "

Linux Foundation Launches 'Zephyr', a tiny OS for Internet of Things

Linux Foundation Launches 'Zephyr', a tiny OS for Internet of Things
February 19, 2016Unknown
The 21st century is witnessing a great change over in the daily life of folks with the advent of IoT devices that are capable of talking to each other without any human intervention. Yeah! Now you do not have to individually cascade an instruction to each of your home devices to accomplish a task. All have gone automated with the actuators and sensors which are infused into the home appliances. The fact is that your IoT devices would only comply within the family of same manufacturers. For example, if you have a Samsung smart refrigerator, and your wearable device is from Apple or any other vendors, then it couldn't sync as both are from different genres. No need to worry now! Zephyr: Future of IoTs The Linux Foundation has broken all the barriers of compatibility issues by releasing a Real-Time Operating System (RTOS) for Internet of Things devices , dubbed " Zephyr ". This OS enables connected devices to communicate with the same protocol.

Google 'Android N' Will Not Use Oracle's Java APIs

Google 'Android N' Will Not Use Oracle's Java APIs
December 30, 2015Swati Khandelwal
Google appears to be no longer using Java application programming interfaces (APIs) from Oracle in future versions of its Android mobile operating system, and switching to an open source alternative instead. Google will be making use of OpenJDK – an open source version of Oracle's Java Development Kit (JDK) – for future Android builds. This was first highlighted by a "mysterious Android codebase commit" submitted to Hacker News. However, Google confirmed to VentureBeat that the upcoming Android N will use OpenJDK, rather its own implementation of the Java APIs. Google and Oracle have been fighting it out for years in a lawsuit, and it is hard to imagine that such a massive change is not related to the search engine giant's ongoing legal dispute with Oracle, however. What Google and Oracle are Fighting About The dispute started when Oracle sued Google for copyright in 2010, claiming that Google improperly used a part of its programming language
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