Berkeley CSUA MOTD:Entry 37555
Berkeley CSUA MOTD
2018/07/19 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

2005/5/6-8 [Computer/SW/Security, Computer/SW/Unix] UID:37555 Activity:nil
5/6     A lot of web sites now have a login snippet on their main page,
        which forefox does not display a SSL icon
        ( Are those logins safe? You can
        usually find a specific login page within the website that
        have the SSL icon. I assume bank sites are usually safe in
        their design, but what about sites like Some sites's login page
        ( does not have a SSL icon, but
        their login button specifically says "secure login", how does
        it work? As an end user, how can one be sure the login/pw
        information is encrypted while in transit?
        \_ It's usually good practice to put the login page under SSL to
           preempt concerns like yours.  Many places don't have a login box
           on their front page, and make you click through to an https link
           to get a login box.  Others put the login box on their front
           page to save you that step, but the load of putting their front
           page under SSL is prohibitive.  If they say it's a secure login,
           the HTTP Post that sends your information will be under ssl.  If
           you want to test this, put in a bogus login/password and watch it
           jump to SSL when you click "login".
           \_ For verification:
           \_ So you have to 'observe' the flashing by of the SSL icon
              to distinguish these sites from sites that indeed uses
              no security. I guess a better question is, how do you
              tell if the HTTP post used to send your login
              information is under SSL?
              \_ Best course of action: don't worry about it.  if someone's
                 really intent on stealing your info, there are easier ways
                 to do it.  There are non-technical ways to protect yourself
                 better.  keep an eye on your account activity.  get your
                 annual credit check (or more frequently if you're worried).
                 SSL is no guarantee no matter how Verisign wants to package
                 \_ I find security policy varies significantly
                    between sites. Your password can be as strong as
                    you like, but often times the "I lost my password"
                    feature is typically implemented with very little
                    security in mind. Better sites will allow you to
                    reset your password after you verified who you are
                    (via secret questions, etc), never revealing what
                    your actual password was. But some no so security
                    conscious sites will simply email your password in
                    plain text, and sometimes all you have to do is to
                    provide your email address.  Some sites will also
                    reset your password with only the email address.
                    You can only guess how careful those sites will
                    treat your data (such as credit card info).. I am
                    trying to sort out the sites that have my login
                    information so that the lesser secure sites do not
                    share the same password as the more
                    secure/important sites...
              \_ The guy I spoke to said it used to be configurable but was
                 taken out.  If I turn any of my URLs into https, it stays
                 https, including turning all the links into ssl, but I know
                 of several people where it redirects to http.  No clue why
                 it varies.  -John
              \_ The only way to be sure is to look at the source and see
                 how it's posting the login.  But even then, you won't know
                 for sure that the authentication server is using weak
        \_ What's pretty funny is that gmail defaults back to http when you've
           logged in, and they seem to have removed the setting the security
           guy I mentioned which lets you set ssl for all mail access.  -John
           \_ My gmail still stays https and always has.  I know yahoo
              switches back to http after login.
              \_ The guy I spoke to said it used to be configurable but was
                 taken out.  If I turn any of my URLs into https, it stays
                 https, including turning all the links into ssl, but I know
                 of several people where it redirects to http.  No clue why
                 it varies.  -John
                 \_ You're right.  I just never noticed it, because my
                    bookmark specified https.  Thanks for the tip.
ERROR, url_link recursive (eces.Colorado.EDU/secure/mindterm2) 2018/07/19 [General] UID:1000 Activity:popular

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/ You will pay for your sins. If you have \
| already paid, please disregard this     |
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