About

I’m using this wordpress as an outlet for my thoughts on Computer Security. Feel free to read and reply, I love to hear opinions on things and I’m always open to criticism.

I’m a student, I have few to no affiliations and if I did I can assure you that my opinions are my own and not my employers.

There will probably be a lot of “X vs Y” and “How To’s” so if that’s your thing you might enjoy this. I’ll oversimplify a lot just because I don’t want to write huge essays explaining the detailed mechanisms of something but if you ever want me to elaborate just leave a comment.

Follow me @insanitybit.

30 thoughts on “About

  1. Thanks for the article on Iron. Really interesting.
    I wonder if you have ever looked at ChromePlus (CoolNovo).
    I have been using it as my second browser for a long time.
    I have never used Chrome or Chromium.

    • Glad you enjoyed the article. I haven’t looked at ChromePlus in a long time, but from what I remember it basically added a few features. I wouldn’t call it a scam like Iron, because Iron tries to scare users into using it, whereas ChromePlus just tries to provide a more friendly default browser – that’s all it intends to do, and, at least when I saw it, it wasn’t making baseless allegations.

      I’ll have a look and maybe write something up on it. I think there are Chromium based browsers that are entirely legitimate.

  2. I’ve recently found your blog and always find your posts really interesting! The posts on passwords and padding were fantastic.

    I’ve been thinking of switching from Windows to Linux. Most of the apps like KeePass and TrueCrypt are available on both but being new to Linux I’m not so sure where to begin with OS security config/AV etc. Do you have any advice (so far I’ve been using Ubuntu)? If I’ve missed some previous blog posts then I apologise in advance!

    Keep up the excellent work!

  3. Hi!

    Thanks for a great (and prompt!) response. I’ll follow the guides and see how I get on.

    Can’t wait for your next post!

    Thanks again, Mike.

  4. Hi,

    I have question about browser’s cache folders.
    I have created RAMdisk and want to move Firefox/Chrome/IE/JAVA cache folder here to speed up browsing. Is it safe to do that? Now all cache folder exist in AppData Local/LocalLow/Roaming folders. Does these folders have anything to do with Windows security? If I move cache folders from here to my RAMdisk will my system be less secure? Using Windows 8.

    Thanks!

    • Hey Linas,

      Good question. Actually, by default if you’re using the most common RAMDisk software it’ll be formatted as Fat32. What I would suggest is that you reformat the RAMDisk (you can right click it and go to format) as NTFS. That way it’s using the more standard permissions system.

      Otherwise there shouldn’t be any security issues introduced.

  5. Hi,

    Thanks again for your assistance and guides, everything’s proving really useful (and interesting!). I have a quick question about antivirus. I’ve read through your previous posts and noticed that you don’t run any. If you were to recommend a solution for Ubuntu what would you choose?

    I’m just curious… Do you tend to use Ubuntu as your primary operating system and then others as required?

    Thanks again!

  6. I’ve been really digging your input in a lot of modern security concerns. You seem to have a way with words that surpasses the average independent blogger. To add on to that, the clinical fairness of your articles makes for an interesting, and most certainly informative read.

    By the by, I was wondering if you could write an article covering the Comodo Dragon browser – just to clarify its legitimacy in comparison to SRware Iron. There’s a lot of development going on right now for the Chromium fork in question, including an attempt to institute master passwords and other security measures. I would love to hear your opinion on this.

    So… by all means, keep on keeping on, random internet person!

    • I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the blog, I really appreciate positive feedback.

      I’d be happy to write about the Dragon Browser. I’ll start a draft of it. I have class almost all day today, but it shouldn’t take too long.

  7. Hi, can you write a program for winning each time on Container Wars? I hear you’re really good at it. Thanks. xoxo

  8. Your site is perhaps one of the very few I am aware of that knows what really goes on in the current security situation. I once mentioned your tips (and linked to your articles) on a forum how important hardening the system/application (high entropy, exploit mitigation, integrity levels) as opposed to throwing every security program imaginable to the system, hoping to enlighten or at least have a rational discussion… and what I got instead is: “NO, AVs and SUPER FIREWALL PROTECTED PEOPLE BEFORE AND I HAVE THIS PROGRAM X Y Z and IM SECURE. WHAT YOU SAY DOESNT MAKE SENSE YOU SUCK” damn.

    I mean, looking around some of the forums I visit, I rarely visit the “Security Setups” threads because of oh my goodness it will give you a heart attack… as of 2013 people are still running a ton of AVs, some 3rd party firewall, and a lot of security software thrown together. All the while running in admin and UAC disabled.

    I sincerely hope you’ll get more readers (even from my blasted IT department), because your insight regarding security is really a welcome change. Keep it up!

    • Thanks I always love a positive review. Yeah, the state and attitude surrounding securing systems is sorta funny/ depressing.

    • It’s pretty cool. It runs applications in a chroot, which is pretty nice. The downside is that root can escape an improperly configured chroot, whereas something like apparmor/ selinux would require a kernel exploit, write access to the chroot can also potentially allow a break out. You can harden chroots with Grsecurity, making it much stronger. I’ve been meaning to try it out.

  9. I can’t remember how I found you, but I do read your website and follow your twitter. I probably searched for some security issue solution that you posted about. Anyway great site. I’ll retweet you. Since you love them.

  10. I have a question about passwords. I’m using Dashlane since it was touted in the NY Times. But how can anything that syncs between computers, therefore sucking my data into the cloud, not be vulnerable to attack? In other words, are my passwords really safe?

    • In the case of a cloud-based password manager there will usually be reliance on encryption so that the file is password protected with a password that only you know.

  11. Hello,

    this is a very interesting blog.

    I’ve seen several articles where you use AppArmor/chroot/iptables to secure applications.

    I’ve come across a great initiative called Firejail, which allows you to run applications in sandboxes (it uses namespaces), where you can easily (in one command line) set up:

    – a chroot (should you wish to)
    – restrict visibility on some key directories/files
    – replace ${HOME}
    – implement seccomp, with whitelist or blacklist
    – implement linux capabilities
    – redefine the interfaces available/visible/active. Turn on a netfilter just valid in that sandbox.
    … and a few more.

    I use that for Firefox, Thunderbird, VLC and a few others, and this is great as it cuts the need to make use of plenty of tools (chroot, netfilter, AppArmor/SELinux…) for one app, replacing this with a centralized config.

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