Tag Archives: Malware

Palo Alto External Dynamic IP Lists

This is a cool and easy to use (security) feature from Palo Alto Networks firewalls: The External Dynamic Lists which can be used with some (free) 3rd party IP lists to block malicious incoming IP connections. In my case I am using two free IP lists to deny any connection from these sources coming into my network/DMZ. I am showing the configuration of such lists on the Palo Alto as well as some stats about it.

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If only one DNS query is malicious …

… the whole Internet breaks down. So happened on a Palo Alto with a DNS proxy and a (slightly misconfigured) anti-spyware profile.

All network clients had a single DNS server configured, namely the DNS proxy of the Palo Alto. And as a single network client requested an URL that was classified as “spyware”, the Palo correctly (!) blocked the DNS session from its DNS proxy to the Internet. Unluckily, this session stayed active for a long time (with drop-all-packets) since many DNS requests were traversing through it. But since it stayed blocked, the Internet was “unavailable” for all end users

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Idea: Malware for Testing Next-Gen Firewalls and APT Solutions

When implementing new firewalls at the customers’ site it is always interesting to verify that the anti-virus scanners etc. are running as expected. For simple virus-engines, a sample virus such as the EICAR anti-malware test file can be used. If this “virus” traverses through the firewall inside various protocols such as http, ftp, or smtp, the firewall must block this connection.

However, next-generation firewalls or any other APT (Advanced Persistent Threat) solutions are able to send unknown executables to its own cloud in order to test it. If a malware is found, these products can block future connections with these files, e.g., by updating the anti-virus patterns or their URL categories.

The problem is: How to test whether the “upload unknown files” function works properly? -> My idea is to have a server that generates “dynamic” viruses. When downloading such a “fresh generated” virus, the antivirus engine does not have a pattern for it. That is, the file must be uploaded to an APT solution. The logs on the firewall should list this upload process.

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Password Policies – Appropriate Security Techniques

How are passwords stolen? What are common password flaws? What are the security techniques to enhance the security of passwords respectively the security of the login-services? What authentication methods provide long-term security? How often should a password be changed? Which methods achieve good security while not being too complicated to be used by end-users?

This blog post discusses several methods of how passwords are stolen and provides approaches of how login-services can be secured.

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