General

HTTP/2 Update

Posted by on October 26, 2016 in General | 0 comments

I wrote about the next version of the HTTP protocol 18 months ago. Since then, HTTP/2 has gained significant traction, but not without generating some controversy along the way. Performance Perhaps the biggest question lingering over HTTP/2 relates to real-world performance benefits. A demonstration comparing the time it takes to load a website over HTTP/1.1 without SSL/TLS versus HTTP/2 (which only works in browsers over HTTPS) has been criticized for being unrealistic. It loads 360 unique images, a scenario that highlights the strengths of HTTP/2’s new design. The criticism comes from the...

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Is Your SSL Server Vulnerable to a FREAK Attack?

Posted by on March 11, 2015 in Blog, General | 0 comments

FREAK is a new man-in-the-middle (MITM) vulnerability discovered by a group of cryptographers at INRIA, Microsoft Research and IMDEA. FREAK stands for “Factoring RSA-EXPORT Keys.” The vulnerability dates back to the 1990s, when the US government banned selling crypto software overseas, unless it used export cipher suites which involved encryption keys no longer than 512-bits. The issue is there are still some clients who let crypto be degraded from “strong RSA” to “export grade RSA”. These clients use OpenSSL, Apple’s Secure Transport and Windows Secure Channel. As such, users of Android...

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Lenovo Enables Man-in-the-Middle Attacks Via Superfish Adware

Posted by on February 20, 2015 in Blog, General | 0 comments

Lenovo is selling computers that contain the Superfish application which “supplements” the user’s SSL sessions to enable their adware application to deliver content transparently; however, due to poor security design this leaves users vulnerable to man-in-the-middle attacks. How it was supposed to work Superfish uses the program “Visual Discovery” to process images in browser content and then displays ads for similar goods and services. This sounds like any other adware application, but in order to maintain SSL sessions and not alert users with security...

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Think Twice Before Using DV for E-Commerce

Posted by on March 12, 2014 in Blog, General | 3 comments

In a previous blog (What Are the Different Types of SSL Certificates?), we described the various types of SSL certificates available from publicly trusted Certificate Authorities (CAs).  CAs are often asked by their customers which certificate type should be used for websites conducting E-Commerce, rather than for just encryption of sensitive data. For the latter case, a Domain Validated (DV) certificate will work fine. A DV cert allows for encryption to take place between the browser and the server. However, because DV certificates do not contain any identification information, they SHOULD...

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Always-On SSL, Part II

Posted by on February 5, 2014 in General | 0 comments

The SSL/TLS protocol has more to offer than just providing you with transmission encryption. Its main benefit is that it provides a way for third parties to authenticate connections to your website over the Internet. A user who can connect to your site and retrieve information via SSL/TLS will have greater assurance and trust that information came from you. The point of Always-On SSL is that once a user is able to create an authenticated connection to your point of presence via https, then he or she should not be bounced back outside of that zone of protection. When content is communicated...

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Always-On SSL, Part I

Posted by on January 16, 2014 in General | 0 comments

There is no doubt that content owners and publishers have a duty to encourage trust and the confidence during internet usage by adopting security best practices. If a customer believes that their data and identity are safe and protected, they are more inclined to continue their online transactions. Industry best practices for website protection should be vendor-neutral, easy to implement, and globally accessible. Websites should take all the reasonable steps possible to adopt best practices in secure design and implementation, and this includes using Always-On SSL across the entire website....

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