Archive for March, 2011

TLS/SSL Server Identity Check will be RFC6125

Tuesday, March 15th, 2011

As I’ve previously mentioned, I’ve been working on a specification for “TLS/SSL Server Identity Checking” along with Peter Saint-Andre.

We’ve now heard back from the RFC Editor, and we’re in the so-called “AUTH48 state” where we, the spec’s authors/editors, work with the RFC Editor folks to turn the Internet-Draft into a RFC.

At this point we know the RFC number-to-be: 6125.

So, we’re close to getting this thing out the door, whew. :)

‘HTTP State Management Mechanism’ (“cookies”) to Proposed Standard

Monday, March 7th, 2011

There’s been various fundamental issues with “HTTP cookies” for ages, e.g. technically and policy-wise (i.e. privacy). The two extant formal specifications of cookies, IETF RFCs 2109 and 2965, as well as the original informal and incomplete “Netscape cookie spec”, have not been implemented uniformly across browsers and servers. Thus how cookies are actually constructed, parsed, and used in practice has been essentially technical folklore. Anyone wanting to craft a new browser or some other application or tool that needs to consume or send cookie headers had to reverse engineer how the browsers were actually doing it as there wasn’t (until now) an accurate specification an implementer could use for reference. This has led to divergence on edge-cases for cookies within various browsers, servers, and other tools.

We’ve been working with browser, server, and web app folk in an IETF working group, “httpstate“, to rectify this, and the draft spec was recently approved for publication as an IETF RFC at the “Proposed Standard” maturity level. This spec differs from the prior specs in that it specifies how cookies are actually used on the Internet today. Anyone crafting a new client or server can implement the spec and have an interoperable implementation as a result.

This is great in that getting this finally explicitly documented will be a key underlying piece of moving “the Web“, and the wider Internet its built upon, on towards its next stage(s). Hopefully, browsers and servers can now converge their “cookie behaviors” :)

Our more detailed blog post (which includes some history) is here..

‘HTTP State Management Mechanism’ to Proposed Standard
http://www.thesecuritypractice.com/the_security_practice/2011/03/http-state-management-mechanism-to-proposed-standard.html

=JeffH sez check it out :)

Web (In)Security: Remediation Efforts – Status and Outlook

Monday, March 7th, 2011

We have a blog post over at my work cohort’s blog, w.r.t. a recent preso we gave, here’s the link…

Web (In)Security: Remediation Efforts – Status and Outlook
http://www.thesecuritypractice.com/the_security_practice/2011/03/web-insecurity-remediation-efforts-status-and-outlook.html

Check it out :)