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CISA and OpenSSF Release Framework for Package Repository Security

CISA and OpenSSF Release Framework for Package Repository Security
Feb 12, 2024 Infrastructure Security / Software Supply Chain
The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) announced that it's partnering with the Open Source Security Foundation (OpenSSF) Securing Software Repositories Working Group to publish a new framework to secure package repositories. Called the  Principles for Package Repository Security , the framework  aims  to establish a set of foundational rules for package managers and further harden open-source software ecosystems. "Package repositories are at a critical point in the open-source ecosystem to help prevent or mitigate such attacks," OpenSSF  said . "Even simple actions like having a documented account recovery policy can lead to robust security improvements. At the same time, capabilities must be balanced with resource constraints of package repositories, many of which are operated by non-profit organizations." Notably, the principles lay out four security maturity levels for package repositories across four categories of authenticati

Three Ways To Supercharge Your Software Supply Chain Security

Three Ways To Supercharge Your Software Supply Chain Security
Jan 04, 2024 Ethical Hacking / Vulnerability Assessment
Section four of the " Executive Order on Improving the Nation's Cybersecurity " introduced a lot of people in tech to the concept of a "Software Supply Chain" and securing it. If you make software and ever hope to sell it to one or more federal agencies, you  have  to pay attention to this. Even if you never plan to sell to a government, understanding your Software Supply Chain and learning how to secure it will pay dividends in a stronger security footing and the benefits it provides. This article will look at three ways to supercharge your  Software Supply Chain Security . What is your Software Supply Chain? It's essentially everything that goes into building a piece of software: from the IDE in which the developer writes code, to the third-party dependencies, to the build systems and scripts, to the hardware and operating system on which it runs. Instabilities and vulnerabilities can be introduced, maliciously or not, from inception to deployment and even beyond.  1: Ke

Timing is Everything: The Role of Just-in-Time Privileged Access in Security Evolution

Timing is Everything: The Role of Just-in-Time Privileged Access in Security Evolution
Apr 15, 2024Active Directory / Attack Surface
To minimize the risk of privilege misuse, a trend in the privileged access management (PAM) solution market involves implementing just-in-time (JIT) privileged access. This approach to  privileged identity management  aims to mitigate the risks associated with prolonged high-level access by granting privileges temporarily and only when necessary, rather than providing users with continuous high-level privileges. By adopting this strategy, organizations can enhance security, minimize the window of opportunity for potential attackers and ensure that users access privileged resources only when necessary.  What is JIT and why is it important?   JIT privileged access provisioning  involves granting privileged access to users on a temporary basis, aligning with the concept of least privilege. This principle provides users with only the minimum level of access required to perform their tasks, and only for the amount of time required to do so. One of the key advantages of JIT provisioning

CISA Urges Manufacturers Eliminate Default Passwords to Thwart Cyber Threats

CISA Urges Manufacturers Eliminate Default Passwords to Thwart Cyber Threats
Dec 18, 2023 Software Security / Vulnerability
The U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) is  urging  manufacturers to get rid of default passwords on internet-exposed systems altogether, citing severe risks that could be exploited by malicious actors to gain initial access to, and move laterally within, organizations. In an alert published last week, the agency called out Iranian threat actors affiliated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) for exploiting operational technology devices with default passwords to gain access to critical infrastructure systems in the U.S. Default passwords  refer to factory default software configurations for embedded systems, devices, and appliances that are typically publicly documented and identical among all systems within a vendor's product line. As a result, threat actors could scan for internet-exposed endpoints using tools like Shodan and attempt to breach them through default passwords, often gaining root or administrative privileges to  perform po

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27 Malicious PyPI Packages with Thousands of Downloads Found Targeting IT Experts

27 Malicious PyPI Packages with Thousands of Downloads Found Targeting IT Experts
Nov 17, 2023 Software Supply Chain / API Security
An unknown threat actor has been observed publishing typosquat packages to the Python Package Index (PyPI) repository for nearly six months with an aim to deliver malware capable of gaining persistence, stealing sensitive data, and accessing cryptocurrency wallets for financial gain. The 27 packages, which masqueraded as popular legitimate Python libraries, attracted thousands of downloads, Checkmarx said in a new report. A majority of the downloads originated from the U.S., China, France, Hong Kong, Germany, Russia, Ireland, Singapore, the U.K., and Japan. "A defining characteristic of this attack was the utilization of steganography to hide a malicious payload within an innocent-looking image file, which increased the stealthiness of the attack," the software supply chain security firm  said . Some of the packages are pyefflorer, pyminor, pyowler, pystallerer, pystob, and pywool, the last of which was planted on May 13, 2023. A common denominator to these packages is t

Malicious NuGet Packages Caught Distributing SeroXen RAT Malware

Malicious NuGet Packages Caught Distributing SeroXen RAT Malware
Oct 31, 2023 Software Security / Malware
Cybersecurity researchers have uncovered a new set of malicious packages published to the NuGet package manager using a lesser-known method for malware deployment. Software supply chain security firm ReversingLabs described the campaign as coordinated and ongoing since August 1, 2023, while linking it to a  host of rogue NuGet packages  that were observed delivering a remote access trojan called SeroXen RAT . "The threat actors behind it are tenacious in their desire to plant malware into the NuGet repository, and to continuously publish new malicious packages," Karlo Zanki, reverse engineer at ReversingLabs,  said  in a report shared with The Hacker News. The names of some of the packages are below - Pathoschild.Stardew.Mod.Build.Config KucoinExchange.Net Kraken.Exchange DiscordsRpc SolanaWallet Monero Modern.Winform.UI MinecraftPocket.Server IAmRoot ZendeskApi.Client.V2 Betalgo.Open.AI Forge.Open.AI Pathoschild.Stardew.Mod.BuildConfig CData.NetSuite.Net.

PyPI Repository Makes 2FA Security Mandatory for Critical Python Projects

PyPI Repository Makes 2FA Security Mandatory for Critical Python Projects
Jul 11, 2022
The maintainers of the official third-party software repository for Python have begun imposing a new two-factor authentication (2FA) condition for projects deemed "critical." "We've begun rolling out a 2FA requirement: soon, maintainers of critical projects must have 2FA enabled to publish, update, or modify them," Python Package Index (PyPI)  said  in a tweet last week. "Any maintainer of a critical project (both 'Maintainers' and 'Owners') are included in the 2FA requirement," it  added . Additionally, the developers of critical projects who have not previously turned on 2FA on PyPi are being offered free hardware security keys from the Google Open Source Security Team. PyPI, which is run by the Python Software Foundation, houses more than 350,000 projects, of which over  3,500 projects  are said to be tagged with a "critical" designation. According to the repository maintainers, any project accounting for the top 1%

Researchers Uncover Malicious NPM Packages Stealing Data from Apps and Web Forms

Researchers Uncover Malicious NPM Packages Stealing Data from Apps and Web Forms
Jul 05, 2022
A widespread software supply chain attack has targeted the NPM package manager at least since December 2021 with rogue modules designed to steal data entered in forms by users on websites that include them. The coordinated attack, dubbed IconBurst by ReversingLabs, involves no fewer than two dozen NPM packages that include obfuscated JavaScript, which comes with malicious code to harvest sensitive data from forms in embedded downstream mobile applications and websites. "These clearly malicious attacks relied on typo-squatting, a technique in which attackers offer up packages via public repositories with names that are similar to — or common misspellings of — legitimate packages," security researcher Karlo Zanki  said  in a Tuesday report. "Attackers impersonated high-traffic NPM modules like umbrellajs and packages published by ionic.io." The packages in question, most of which were published in the last months, have been collectively downloaded more than 27,00

NIST Releases Updated Cybersecurity Guidance for Managing Supply Chain Risks

NIST Releases Updated Cybersecurity Guidance for Managing Supply Chain Risks
May 05, 2022
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) on Thursday released an updated cybersecurity guidance for managing risks in the supply chain, as it increasingly emerges as a lucrative attack vector. "It encourages organizations to consider the vulnerabilities not only of a finished product they are considering using, but also of its components — which may have been developed elsewhere — and the journey those components took to reach their destination," NIST said in a statement. The new  directive  outlines  major security controls and practices  that entities should adopt to identify, assess, and respond to risks at different stages of the supply chain, including the possibility of malicious functionality, flaws in third-party software, insertion of counterfeit hardware, and poor manufacturing and development practices. The development follows an Executive Order issued by the U.S. President on " Improving the Nation's Cybersecurity (14028) " las
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