Security lessons at MSWL 2012

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This past weekend I ended my lessons on our Master Software Libre.

If you follow this blog you will know I usually write down the topics I teach along these lessons. It is always good thing getting feedback and getting in touch with persons reading these lines.

By the way, this year our Master runs its fifth edition. I am proud to watch how it is working and how old and new students, teachers, collaborators, community advisors and all our friends build this knowledge community daily.

Having a broad look I am able to find plenty of technologies, hacking, know-how and a lot of relevant stuff each year.

Although teaching people is always a huge responsibility, I like to start my lessons remembering IT security is a hot topic and, in essence, this domain talks about sensible and dangerous topics; so prudence and good sense are always the right way to follow here.

OK ... so nowadays, what am I teaching in those lessons really? what am I covering under the topics of Physical Security, Cryptography, Networking and Security Networking? and, at the end, on what kind of practical laboratories and exercises are we working?

Well, bearing in mind I think IT security is a very complexed topic where different social, economic and technological forces converge I compiled all security stuff covered in this V edition. In summary, some of the syllabus’s drivers were the following:

On Physical Security:

  • Physical system security methodologies
  • Environmental design
  • Design and evaluation of physical protection systems

On Cryptography:

  • Cryptographic models
  • Cryptographic systems
  • Free/open software tooling
  • Integration and usual cases

On Networking:

  • Foundations
  • User and Kernel stack implementation
  • Administration and tooling
  • Typical configurations and trouble shooting

On Security Networking:

  • Network attacks and defense
  • Good practices, blueprints and security methodology
  • Network device security
  • Network architectures
  • Integrity and availability
  • Exploitation and responsible disclosure
  • Underground markets
  • Vulnerability management
  • Risk analysis and defense models
  • Advanced and strategic defense in organizations

Aligned with these points, I ran some new live-demos and attacks too.

Apart of the usual attacks showing design flaws, networking protocol weaknesses, practical communication hijacking or break-in techniques; we studied real networks following one ethical and legal approach. It was useful to identify their strengths and weaknesses while suggesting possible solutions and alternatives.

Finally, together with the design and model of their own embassy by students, we jumped to Linux kernel land to study (line by line in source code) as a real Linux kernel rootkit works under the hood; hiding network connections, users, files and so on.

I would like to think this new 5th promotion have now a better insight and perception of the real risk and magnitude of the battlefield out there ... I think so :)

Happy hacking!

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