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Re: �Re: Re: �Re: Re^2: Untainting safely. (b0iler proofing?)

by BrowserUk (Pope)
on Jun 26, 2002 at 21:28 UTC ( #177539=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Re: Re: Re: Re^2: Untainting safely. (b0iler proofing?)
in thread Untainting safely. (b0iler proofing?)

Ok Merlyn, I don't disagree with most of that, althought I did make some comments here(*see note below) which (IMO) somewhat deflate your proper code review and proper security review arguement a little.

I still feel that something that must be done, project after project, and time after time within each project, is an ideal candidate for factorisation.

I also feel that my personal lack of competence (which is confined to Perl, I have 20 years of typing p-r-i-n-t in other languages) is not, and should not be a factor in the discussion of whether the factorisation of--an often used, high priority, difficult to get right--part of the overall Perl/CGI project equation is a valid and valuable idea or not.

Maybe NIH lives on.


* Note: the referenced post is attributed to (as is the post to which you replied) AM cos i made a stupid mistake. I have asked the editors to correct this.

  • Comment on Re: �Re: Re: �Re: Re^2: Untainting safely. (b0iler proofing?)

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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re^2: Untainting safely. (b0iler proofing?)
by merlyn (Sage) on Jun 26, 2002 at 21:44 UTC
    I still feel that something that must be done, project after project, and time after time within each project, is an ideal candidate for factorisation.
    And that's been done. And it's already available. It's called the "Perl Security FAQ" and the "Web Security FAQ". It's installed as humanware, not computerware, because the problem is not the programs, the problem is the programmers.

    No amount of Perl code would keep you from typing a single-arg system call. But 15 minutes staring at the Security FAQ, and bingo, you know not to type that.

    Why is that so hard to get?

    {sigh}

    -- Randal L. Schwartz, Perl hacker

      When something is difficult and/or dangerous and needs to be done repeatedly.

      When "human factors" mean that even the most god-like perfectionist can have a bad day.

      When simple economic factors prevent "proper code reviews and audit" with experienced and security trained peers. Or the hiring of expensive external expertise.

      When programmer turnover can be high.

      Simple logic and long-standing IT practice suggests that coding it once, getting it right, using it everywhere is the way to go.

      It is much easier to review code to check that the appropriate routine was called to sanitise all external data, than it is to inspect and verify that they way the sanitisation has been done is correct. Especially if the use of the sanitised data is to pass it to an external module - possibly third-party sourced.

      And I do get it? I just happen to think that you are wrong. {sigh}

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