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BDFL - Memuneh
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  Reply # 288880 11-Jan-2010 09:47
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Comradehunt: Damn it, it did that thing where I write a reply and click post reply, and instead it goes back to the forum homepage. Wish I knew why it did that. Keep wasting time writing replies and they get deleted. I try to copy text to clipboard before submitting but sometimes, like this time, I forget.


I can't see to reproduce this problem. Have another discussion going on.

Comradehunt: So changing from VF to Telecom broadband or vice versa, means that (any) website visited will have no clue who you are, there will be no other form of ID that gives the game away you are in fact the same person?

In this scenario do the cookies obtained during previous ISP still work, or will they be replaced with new ones and passwords, etc need to be entered again?


Cookies are stored on your PC and mostly not related to which ISP you use.




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  Reply # 288881 11-Jan-2010 09:48
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True about the wrongs, but what do you expect - technology companies that follow good computing practice - what do you expect :-)

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  Reply # 288882 11-Jan-2010 09:48
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magu:
freitasm:
friedCrumpet: Password in the cookie? I hope geekzone is well tested for XSS vulnerabilities!


Do you worry about Trade Me? They store passwords in plain text too...



Oh OK, then. Since they're doing it as well, it must be fine, right? ;D


No, it's not that it's ok. It's that I don't see people crying for things that are obviously a lot more sensitive than a login to Geekzone.




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  Reply # 288884 11-Jan-2010 09:50
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freitasm:
magu:
freitasm:
friedCrumpet: Password in the cookie? I hope geekzone is well tested for XSS vulnerabilities!


Do you worry about Trade Me? They store passwords in plain text too...



Oh OK, then. Since they're doing it as well, it must be fine, right? ;D


No, it's not that it's ok. It's that I don't see people crying for things that are obviously a lot more sensitive than a login to Geekzone.



That's because on stuff that is a lot more sensitive I'm a lot more cautious of using 'auto-login'.


I've changed my password to something really stupid now, just in case.




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  Reply # 288885 11-Jan-2010 09:52
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magu:
freitasm:
magu:
freitasm:
friedCrumpet: Password in the cookie? I hope geekzone is well tested for XSS vulnerabilities!


Do you worry about Trade Me? They store passwords in plain text too...



Oh OK, then. Since they're doing it as well, it must be fine, right? ;D


No, it's not that it's ok. It's that I don't see people crying for things that are obviously a lot more sensitive than a login to Geekzone.


That's because on stuff that is a lot more sensitive I'm a lot more cautious of using 'auto-login'.

I've changed my password to something really stupid now, just in case.


And you probably noticed how the field doesn't reflect your actual password anymore? Also have you tried to retrieve the password? We now send a reset link instead of your password.

These changes were implemented just before the holidays.




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  Reply # 288886 11-Jan-2010 09:53
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freitasm:
magu:

Use a hash at a minimum.


And how good would that be? Someone can steal the hash and still use it. The password is hashed and encrypted in our database, so the only way to be stolen is in your own PC or in transit during login.

Sensible password policy: use a different one for each website.



A stolen hash only gets you into one site (provided it's salted).  Yes it is completely sensible to use different passwords for different sites but you can't really trust your users to do that can you?


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  Reply # 288887 11-Jan-2010 09:54
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That's very nice and dandy. But I'm still a bit shocked to see my (believed secure) password in plain-text inside the cookie.

Better safe than sorry.




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  Reply # 288888 11-Jan-2010 09:55
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friedCrumpet:
freitasm:
magu:

Use a hash at a minimum.


And how good would that be? Someone can steal the hash and still use it. The password is hashed and encrypted in our database, so the only way to be stolen is in your own PC or in transit during login.

Sensible password policy: use a different one for each website.



A stolen hash only gets you into one site (provided it's salted).  Yes it is completely sensible to use different passwords for different sites but you can't really trust your users to do that can you?



It's still access to the site... It won't solve the whole problem actually. That's my point.








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  Reply # 288889 11-Jan-2010 09:55
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So where do said cookies live? I think I've almost found them, I have revealed the hidden folders but just can't find them. So far I'm in users/me/appdata/local/microsoft... am I on right track?

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  Reply # 288890 11-Jan-2010 09:56
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Depends on each browser, but I believe you're close to it for IE.




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  Reply # 288897 11-Jan-2010 10:14
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freitasm:
friedCrumpet:

A stolen hash only gets you into one site (provided it's salted).  Yes it is completely sensible to use different passwords for different sites but you can't really trust your users to do that can you?



It's still access to the site... It won't solve the whole problem actually. That's my point.



True, but it goes someway to protecting your users from being hacked on other sites.  No security solution is perfect but hashing the password is a simple measure that doesn't impact on the user's convenience.



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  Reply # 288898 11-Jan-2010 10:16
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Found them. I can't (don't know how) to access them directly as the folder does not appear even though I have revealed hidden folders. I can find it via internet options. Found my GZ password in them, but the 3 TM cookies I had did not seem to contain my password.

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  Reply # 288931 11-Jan-2010 12:11
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Comradehunt: Found them. I can't (don't know how) to access them directly as the folder does not appear even though I have revealed hidden folders. I can find it via internet options. Found my GZ password in them, but the 3 TM cookies I had did not seem to contain my password.


Agreed - a thorough look through my FF cookies reveals no Trade Me "password" cookie.. just a session ID, trademe member #, and few other odd things (screenSize??) - I'm not sure how many other sites do store password in plain text in cookies though..




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  Reply # 288935 11-Jan-2010 12:47
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If you tick remember me in trademe it stores an extra cookie with a far future expiry called: dbs_id that contains a guid.  So no they don't store plain text passwords in a cookie maybe they did in the past but it's a bad old practice that should be eliminated.

The #1 reason storing the password in a cookie in clear text is really bad is because a dictionary style attack can be used to hijack someone's session, they don't even need to steal your cookie.

Dodgy old code/practices like that should really be cleaned up whenever possible

Recommend reading this:
http://jaspan.com/improved_persistent_login_cookie_best_practice

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Reply # 288946 11-Jan-2010 13:14
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Ragnor: Recommend reading this:
http://jaspan.com/improved_persistent_login_cookie_best_practice


From the article:


Miller correctly describes the many advantages of this approach. One disadvantage, however, is that if an attacker successfully steals a victim's login cookie and uses it before the victim next accesses the site, the cookie will work and the site will issue a new valid login cookie to the attacker (this disadvantage is far from unique to Miller's design). The attacker will be able to continue accessing the site as the victim until the remembered login session expires. When the victim next accesses the site his remembered login will not work (because each token can only be used one time) but he's much more likely to think that "something broke" and just log in again than to realize that his credentials were stolen. Displaying a "last login time" may help the user notice the problem but, frequently, it will go undetected.


I was very tempted to go with a token design about two years ago. The very reason why I didn't go is because a) it only works with one browser - set a browser to remember the login means all others are gone and b) an attacker could still impersonate you if you have not logged in since the last token was issued.

I see the author proposes some workarounds for these two situations, but I am still working on what the best approach would be.

As I said the first step was to hash/encrypt the password in our database, and this was done last month.





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