Authentic8 Blog Author: A8 Team

Authentic8 Completes FedRAMP ‘In Process’ Authorization Milestone

Authentic8, the maker of Silo, the leading web isolation platform for commercial and government organizations, announced today that it has completed all requisite steps and is formally “In Process” for FedRAMP authorization.

What Is FedRAMP?

The Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) is a government-wide certification program that standardizes the security, reliability, and integrity of cloud products and services. FedRAMP certification aims to ensure consistent compliance across all federal agencies and streamlines approval and procurement processes.

Authentic8 began working with government organizations in 2015. With more than 160 federal, state, and local agencies relying on Silo cloud browsing and web investigation solutions to execute their most important missions, Authentic8 is the largest provider of isolation technology to US government organizations.

“Something as simple as going online presents significant risk to any organization, and government data is a particularly sweet target for cybercriminals and nation states,” said Justin Cleveland, Head of Authentic8’s government business. “Achieving FedRAMP authorization will help us expand

To TOR or Not to TOR?

Recent mass shootings in Christchurch, Poway, and El Paso, as well as the lesser-known attack on a synagogue in Halle, Germany all have something in common other than being acts of violence. The perpetrators all had an online presence on a forum known as "8chan".

After the El Paso attack, 8chan was dropped by service providers and went offline. The shooter in Halle couldn't announce the attack on the forum; however, it was still live-streamed, similar to the attack in Christchurch. The attacker also used the name "anon", short for anonymous, a typical username used for privacy in forums such as 8chan.

8Chan has since rebranded as "8kun" and is back online as of November 3rd, 2019. The screenshot below shows 8kun's landing page in TOR.

Screenshot: 8kun Landing Page in TOR (Authentic8 Blog)

Forums such as 8kun are not only a gathering place for users to gain inspiration to commit attacks.  They also serve as dissemination points for manifestos furthering the spread of this type of terrorism.

The Christchurch

Interview: HTTPS Interception, TLS Fingerprinting, and the Browser

Use HTTPS, they said. Make sure your browsers shows that green padlock, they said. You’ll be safe, nobody can eavesdrop, they said.

IT security teams and threat hunters, who are familiar with the inherent security weakness of the web’s underlying protocols, know better.

The problem with HTTPS internet connections is similar to the problem with VPN. Or, as Larry Loeb put it in his post HTTPS: Beware the False Sense of Security on this blog: “[U]sers think that it does more than it actually does.”

For starters, a basic HTTPS connection gets established when the browser (client) connects directly to an origin server to send requests and download content protected by TLS-based  encryption. Still, this communication is vulnerable to interception.

The reason is simple. Often, the browser doesn’t connect directly with the web server serving the website. Instead, data gets routed through a proxy or middlebox, a.k.a. "monster-in-the-middle" (MITM). HTTPS interception, for benign or malign reasons,

Interview: James Kettle Explains HTTP Desync Attacks (In Under 3 Minutes)

$70k - how's that for a bug bounty total netted from an almost forgotten web exploit?

At Black Hat USA 2019 in Las Vegas, James Kettle of Portswigger Web Security demonstrated how he pulled it off. The security researcher used an old (by internet standards) technique called HTTP Request Smuggling, which was first documented back in 2005.

It still works. Kettle's exploit schemes, dubbed Desync Attacks, leverage the HTTP protocol support for sending multiple HTTP  requests over a single underlying TCP or SSL/TLS socket.

HTTP requests are traditionally understood as isolated entities that are placed back to back. In his presentation of request smuggling attacks for cybersecurity researchers, Kettle showed how he was able to overcome this compartmentalization.

The British threat hunter's approach enabled him to splice requests into others, as he said, to "gain maximum privilege  access to internal APIs, poison web caches, and compromise what's possibly your most trusted login page."

How did he do it? And what does

Tips & Tricks for Anonymous Social Media Investigations

How can professional investigators securely conduct research on social media without exposing their organization? Authentic8’s Nick Finnberg, OSINT training specialist and former intelligence analyst, shared insights and tradecraft insights, tips and tools at a webinar on social media investigations.

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There are more than 3.5 billion active social media users across the world. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Reddit, 8chan and Co. can be a treasure trove for law enforcement, fraud investigators, corporate security specialists, and Open Source Intelligence (OSINT) analysts. Provided, that is, the researchers have tools at their disposal that are up to the task.

That’s a big IF. Online investigators need to be able to quickly and efficiently collect, save, and collaboratively analyze data while maintaining adequate operational security (OpSec). This often poses a challenge, because they also grapple with budget constraints, inadequate online tools with inherent security vulnerabilities, and an acute shortage of properly trained cybersecurity personnel.

How to safely, effectively, and anonymously use social media for