Feeds

Gentoo cuts key parts of itself from net for its own good

Semicolon-ectomy

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

Admins with the Gentoo Project say they have disconnected major parts of its website a week after discovering it could be vulnerable to a command injection attack that allows bad guys to remotely execute code on the machine.

At time of writing, users trying to access Gentoo Archives and at least seven other areas of Gentoo.org got a message saying they were unavailable. Gentoo pulled the server hosting the sections "to prevent further exploitation and to allow for forensic analysis," according to Gentoo's homepage.

The words "further exploitation" and "forensic analysis" suggest the server was pwned, but Gentoo assures us the damage was minimal.

"There was no possibility of any leak of personal or meddling with the Gentoo Portage tree," Mike Doty, a member of Gentoo's Infrastructure team, said in an emailed statement. "The attack was limited to one service on one server."

Members intend to rebuild the server and will also perform a security audit on source code for packages.gentoo.org, which is the service containing the injection vulnerability. According to this advisory, the vulnerability allows the remote execution of code by attaching a semicolon to the end of the URL, immediately followed by the command an attacker wants to run. The bottom of the page will then display the output of that command.

Gentoo's advisory comes a week after Ubuntu unplugged five of its eight production servers following the discovery they had been so badly compromised that they were being used to attack other sites. Turns out the systems, which were sponsored by Canonical and hosted by the community, were running an old version of Ubuntu. Tsk, tsk.

Other Gentoo sites and services being shuttered included packagestest.gentoo.org, scripts.gentoo.org, archivestest.gentoo.org, kiss.gentoo.org, stats.gentoo.org and survey.gentoo.org. Gentoo wouldn't estimate when it will have them back online. ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Infosec geniuses hack a Canon PRINTER and install DOOM
Internet of Stuff securo-cockups strike yet again
'Speargun' program is fantasy, says cable operator
We just might notice if you cut our cables
Apple Pay is a tidy payday for Apple with 0.15% cut, sources say
Cupertino slurps 15 cents from every $100 purchase
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
YouTube, Amazon and Yahoo! caught in malvertising mess
Cisco says 'Kyle and Stan' attack is spreading through compromised ad networks
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
Microsoft to patch ASP.NET mess even if you don't
We know what's good for you, because we made the mess says Redmond
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
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?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.