Friday, April 19, 2013

All, I noticed a tweet by HD Moore today giving a shout out to this post written last week by Ed Skoudis. Very good read. Here's a link and an excerpt:

http://pen-testing.sans.org/blog/pen-testing/2013/04/08/when-offense-and-defense-become-one

"at sufficiently advanced technical levels, offense and defense sometimes merge and become one. Offensive techniques can be used to achieve defensive ends; defensive means can be used to achieve offensive ends; and, sometimes, the inherent technical skills of offense and defense are actually identical."


"Consider these examples:
  • Endpoint security suites: Have you ever pondered what these tools really are? With their integrated anti-virus, personal firewall, and host-based Intrusion Prevention Systems, they operate at a fairly low-level of most operating systems, hooking all kinds of system calls so that administrators can maintain control of the machine. Wait... that's a rootkit! The only difference between an endpoint security suite and most rootkits is the level of functionality and who controls it: good guy administrators or bad guys. So, we've got a multi-billion dollar segment of the infosec industry that is actually built on selling commercial rootkits, also known as endpoint security suites."
Ed Skoudis is a very dynamic teacher there at SANS, and I recommend his courses to everyone.

6 comments:

  1. This is interesting. I didn't know of Skoudis, but will follow him now.

    Also, I should note that this not only happens on «sufficiently advanced technical levels» (or at least, that the definition of «technical» doesn't restrict itself to IT. Anyone trained in martial arts knows that defense and offense are basically the same actions applied to different purposes.

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