Feeds

Ubuntu unplugs compromised servers

Five out of eight systems riddled with bugs

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Ubuntu had to shut down five of its eight production servers last week after realising the poorly maintained systems were compromised to such an extent they had become a source of attacks against other systems.

The servers were sponsored by Canonical but hosted by the community. The systems were running an old unsupported version of Ubuntu, a factor that goes some way to explaining why they were so insecure.

Problems included missing security patches, the use of FTP (rather than a secure protocol) to access the machines, and no recent upgrades due to problems with the network cards and later kernels. Kernel upgrades were omitted because of poor backwards compatibility with the hardware Canonical supplied.

It's unclear whether or not files hosted on the servers were altered by hackers. A post-mortem by Canonical found that hacking into the systems would have been easy for any moderately skilled hacker.

"An attacker could have gotten a shell through almost any of these sites," writes James Troup, leader of the Canonical sysadmin team.

Ubuntu community members have been given the choice of either migrating the servers to Canonical's data centre or to stay on hosted servers. More on the incident can be found in Ubuntu's newsletter here. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
NSA SOURCE CODE LEAK: Information slurp tools to appear online
Now you can run your own intelligence agency
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
Cloud unicorns are extinct so DiData cloud mess was YOUR fault
Applications need to be built to handle TITSUP incidents
Stop the IoT revolution! We need to figure out packet sizes first
Researchers test 802.15.4 and find we know nuh-think! about large scale sensor network ops
Turnbull should spare us all airline-magazine-grade cloud hype
Box-hugger is not a dirty word, Minister. Box-huggers make the cloud WORK
SanDisk vows: We'll have a 16TB SSD WHOPPER by 2016
Flash WORM has a serious use for archived photos and videos
Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data
Got a supercomputer? Want to simulate a universe? Here you go
Do you spend ages wasting time because of a bulging rack?
No more cloud-latency tea breaks for you, users! Get a load of THIS
prev story

Whitepapers

Free virtual appliance for wire data analytics
The ExtraHop Discovery Edition is a free virtual appliance will help you to discover the performance of your applications across the network, web, VDI, database, and storage tiers.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
The total economic impact of Druva inSync
Examining the ROI enterprises may realize by implementing inSync, as they look to improve backup and recovery of endpoint data in a cost-effective manner.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Website security in corporate America
Find out how you rank among other IT managers testing your website's vulnerabilities.