Feeds

Kaminsky calls for DNSSEC deployment

Political hot potato

The essential guide to IT transformation

ARLINGTON, VA. -- Dan Kaminsky's second act has begun: Pushing the adoption of the DNSSEC security standard for the domain-name system.

So many security frameworks — from password resets via e-mail to SSL certificates — rely on DNS in some way that the protocol has to be secured for Internet security to work, Kaminsky told attendees at the Black Hat DC Security Briefings. DNSSEC is by far the leading security standard for the domain-name system, and the US government has already committed to deploying the protocol this year.

However, DNSSEC is hard to deploy and maintain and is a political hot potato, because in the simplest case, a single root — administered by the U.S. Department of Commerce — would authenticate the entire domain-name system for the Internet, Kaminsky said. Yet, other countries can maintain their own root servers for their domains, and as long as the servers are maintained, the DNS system will continue to work, he said.

"Politics is getting in our way more than security," Kaminsky said. "It's time to sign the root and be done with it."

Last July, Kaminsky and a number of Internet infrastructure companies announced that he had discovered a significant attack on the domain-name system. The companies issued patches for their products, but within three weeks, online attackers had already started using the flaw to attack some popular domains. Many DNS servers remain unpatched, he said.

Kaminsky, who is the director of penetration testing for security firm IOActive, has taken two months leave from his work to advocate DNSSEC adoption, he told SecurityFocus.

The researcher also argued for simple implementations of DNSSEC. While the protocol is fine, DNSSEC systems are not easy to deploy or maintain. Without automation, administrators will keep putting off deployments, he stressed.

This article originally appeared in SecurityFocus.

Copyright © 2008, SecurityFocus

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Snowden on NSA's MonsterMind TERROR: It may trigger cyberwar
Plus: Syria's internet going down? That was a US cock-up
Who needs hackers? 'Password1' opens a third of all biz doors
GPU-powered pen test yields more bad news about defences and passwords
e-Borders fiasco: Brits stung for £224m after US IT giant sues UK govt
Defeat to Raytheon branded 'catastrophic result'
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Germany 'accidentally' snooped on John Kerry and Hillary Clinton
Dragnet surveillance picks up EVERYTHING, USA, m'kay?
Linux kernel devs made to finger their dongles before contributing code
Two-factor auth enabled for Kernel.org repositories
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.