Re: MonkeyShell: using XML-RPC for access to a remote shell

From: Darryl Luff (dluff_at_IITSCDM.COM.AU)
Date: 10/12/04

  • Next message: Russ: "Re: Microsoft Security Bulletin MS04-038 - Cumulative Security Update for Internet Explorer (834707)"
    Date:         Tue, 12 Oct 2004 15:56:35 +1000
    To: NTBUGTRAQ@LISTSERV.NTBUGTRAQ.COM
    
    

    On Sun, 2004-10-10 at 22:38 -0400, Abe Usher wrote:
    > Security pundits have been warning about the dangers implicit with Web
    > services for years. A good starting point for understanding the security
    > issues related to Web services can be found at:
    > http://searchwebservices.techtarget.com/originalContent/0,289142,sid26_gci872720,00.html
    >
    The 'Monkey Shell' looks like a good demonstration, but it could have
    just as easily been implemented using the normal CGI interface, or
    straight HTTP requests. As things like httptunnel have done.

    I don't understand why the 'New' web services, with requests and
    responses encoded as XML over HTTP, are considered more insecure than
    the 'old' web services with requests and responses encoded directly in
    HTML, or in custom formats. The functionality is the same, only the
    transport encoding is different.

    I can see other problems with the 'new' services, with increased network
    load, harder parsing for small devices, and the inevitable security
    problems introduced with any newly written software. But I don't see how
    changing the actual request/response encoding magically makes it any
    less secure?

    Mr Wagner in the linked article says that "the danger is that almost
    anything can come over a web service connection". But "almost anything"
    can also come over a straight HTTP connection. What's the difference?

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