Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-05 Thread Anne Lynn Wheeler
Peter Gutmann wrote:
Neither.  Currently they've typically been smart-card cores glued to the 
MB and accessed via I2C/SMB.
and chips that typically have had eal4+ or eal5+ evaluations. hot topic 
in 2000, 2001 ... at the intel developer's forums and rsa conferences

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Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-05 Thread Anne Lynn Wheeler
Erwann ABALEA wrote:
  I've read your objections. Maybe I wasn't clear. What's wrong in
installing a cryptographic device by default on PC motherboards?
I work for a PKI 'vendor', and for me, software private keys is a
nonsense. How will you convice Mr Smith (or Mme Michu) to buy an
expensive CC EAL4+ evaluated token, install the drivers, and solve the
inevitable conflicts that will occur, simply to store his private key? You
first have to be good to convice him to justify the extra depense.
If a standard secure hardware cryptographic device is installed by default
on PCs, it's OK! You could obviously say that Mr Smith won't be able to
move his certificates from machine A to machine B, but more than 98% of
the time, Mr Smith doesn't need to do that.
Installing a TCPA chip is not a bad idea. It is as 'trustable' as any
other cryptographic device, internal or external. What is bad is accepting
to buy a software that you won't be able to use if you decide to claim
your ownership... Palladium is bad, TCPA is not bad. Don't confuse the
two.
the cost of EAL evaluation typically has already been amortized across 
large number of chips in the smartcard market. the manufactoring costs 
of such a chip is pretty proportional to the chip size ... and the thing 
that drives chip size tends to be the amount of eeprom memory.

in tcpa track at intel developer's forum a couple years ago ... i gave a 
talk and claimed that i had designed and significantly cost reduced such 
a chip by throwing out all features that weren't absolutely necessary 
for security. I also mentioned that two years after i had finished such 
a design ... that tcpa was starting to converge to something similar. 
the head of tcpa in the audience quiped that i didn't have a committee 
of 200 helping me with the design.

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Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-05 Thread Steven M. Bellovin
In message [EMAIL PROTECTED], Dan Kaminsky writes:

Uh, you *really* have no idea how much the black hat community is
looking forward to TCPA.  For example, Office is going to have core
components running inside a protected environment totally immune to
antivirus.



How? TCPA is only a cryptographic device, and some BIOS code, nothing
else. Does the coming of TCPA chips eliminate the bugs, buffer overflows,
stack overflows, or any other way to execute arbitrary code? If yes, isn't
that a wonderful thing? Obviously it doesn't (eliminate bugs and so on).

  

TCPA eliminates external checks and balances, such as antivirus.  As the 
user, I'm not trusted to audit operations within a TCPA-established 
sandbox.  Antivirus is essentially a user system auditing tool, and 
TCPA-based systems have these big black boxes AV isn't allowed to analyze.

Imagine a sandbox that parses input code signed to an API-derivable 
public key.  Imagine an exploit encrypted to that.  Can AV decrypt the 
payload and prevent execution?  No, of course not.  Only the TCPA 
sandbox can.  But since AV can't get inside of the TCPA sandbox, 
whatever content is protected in there is quite conspicuously unprotected.

It's a little like having a serial killer in San Quentin.  You feel 
really safe until you realize...uh, he's your cellmate.

I don't know how clear I can say this, your threat model is broken, and 
the bad guys can't stop laughing about it.


I have no idea whether or not the bad guys are laughing about it, but 
if they are, I agree with them -- I'm very afriad that this chip will 
make matters worse, not better.  With one exception -- preventing the 
theft of very sensitive user-owned private keys -- I don't think that 
the TCPA chip is solving the right problems.  *Maybe* it will solve the 
problems of a future operating system architecture; on today's systems, 
it doesn't help, and probably makes matters worse.

TCPA is a way to raise the walls between programs executing in 
different protection spaces.  So far, so good.  Now -- tell me the last 
time you saw an OS flaw that directly exploited flaws in conventional 
memory protection or process isolation?  They're *very* rare.

The problems we see are code bugs and architectural failures.  A buffer 
overflow in a Web browser still compromises the browser; if the 
now-evil browser is capable of writing files, registry entries, etc., 
the user's machine is still capable of being turned into a spam engine, 
etc.  Sure, in some new OS there might be restrictions on what such an 
application can do, but you can implement those restrictions with 
today's hardware.  Again, the problem is in the OS architecture, not in 
the limitations of its hardware isolation.

I can certainly imagine an operating system that does a much better job 
of isolating processes.  (In fact, I've worked on such things; if 
you're interested, see my papers on sub-operating systems and separate 
IP addresses per process group.)  But I don't see that TCPA chips add 
much over today's memory management architectures.  Furthermore, as Dan 
points out, it may make things worse -- the safety of the OS depends on 
the userland/kernel interface, which in turn is heavily dependent on 
the complexity of the privileged kernel modules.  If you put too much 
complex code in your kernel -- and from the talks I've heard this is 
exactly what Microsoft is planning -- it's not going to help the 
situation at all.  Indeed, as Dan points out, it may make matters worse.

Microsoft's current secure coding initiative is a good idea, and from 
what I've seen they're doing a good job of it.  In 5 years, I wouldn't 
be at all surprised if the rate of simple bugs -- the buffer overflows, 
format string errors, race conditions, etc. -- was much lower in 
Windows and Office than in competing open source products.  (I would 
add that this gain has come at a *very* high monetary cost -- training, 
code reviews, etc., aren't cheap.)  The remaining danger -- and it's a 
big one -- is the architecture flaws, where ease of use and 
functionality often lead to danger.  Getting this right -- getting it 
easy to use *and* secure -- is the real challenge.  Nor are competing 
products immune; the drive to make KDE and Gnome (and for that matter 
MacOS X) as easy to use (well, easier to use) than Windows is likely to 
lead to the same downward security sprial.

I'm ranting, and this is going off-topic.  My bottom line: does this 
chip solve real problems that aren't solvable with today's technology?  
Other than protecting keys -- and, of course, DRM -- I'm very far from 
convinced of it.  The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in 
ourselves.

--Prof. Steven M. Bellovin, http://www.cs.columbia.edu/~smb



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Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-05 Thread Mark Allen Earnest
Trei, Peter wrote:
It could easily be leveraged to make motherboards
which will only run 'authorized' OSs, and OSs
which will run only 'authorized' software.
And you, the owner of the computer, will NOT
neccesarily be the authority which gets to decide
what OS and software the machine can run.
If you 'take ownership' as you put it, the internal
keys and certs change, and all of a sudden you
might not have a bootable computer anymore.
Goodbye Linux.
Goodbye Freeware.
Goodbye independent software development.
It would be a very sad world if this comes
to pass.
Yes it would, many governments are turning to Linux and other freeware. 
Many huge companies make heavy use of Linux and and freeware, suddenly 
losing this would have a massive effect on their bottom line and 
possibly enough to impact the economy as a whole. Independent software 
developers are a significant part of the economy as well, and most 
politicians do not want to associate themselves with the concept of 
hurting small business. Universities and other educational 
institutions will fight anything that resembles what you have described 
tooth and nail.

To think that this kind of technology would be mandated by a government 
is laughable. Nor do I believe there will be any conspiracy on the part 
of ISPs to require to in order to get on the Internet. As it stands now 
most people are running 5+ year old computer and windows 98/me, I doubt 
this is going to change much because for most people, this does what 
they want (minus all the security vulnerabilities, but with NAT 
appliances those are not even that big a deal). There is no customer 
demand for this technology to be mandated, there is no reason why an ISP 
or vendor would want to piss off significant percentages of their 
clients in this way. The software world is becoming MORE open. Firefox 
and Openoffice are becoming legitimate in the eyes of government and 
businesses, Linux is huge these days, and the open source development 
method is being talked about in business mags, board rooms, and 
universities everywhere.

The government was not able to get the Clipper chip passed and that was 
backed with the horror stories of rampant pedophilia, terrorism, and 
organized crime. Do you honestly believe they will be able to destroy 
open source, linux, independent software development, and the like with 
just the fear of movie piracy, mp3 sharing, and such? Do you really 
think they are willing to piss off large sections of the voting 
population, the tech segment of the economy, universities, small 
businesses, and the rest of the world just because the MPAA and RIAA 
don't like customers owning devices they do not control?

It is entirely possibly that a machine like you described will be built, 
 I wish them luck because they will need it. It is attempted quite 
often and yet history shows us that there is really no widespread demand 
for iOpeners, WebTV, and their ilk. I don't see customers demanding 
this, therefor there will probably not be much of a supply. Either way, 
there is currently a HUGE market for general use PCs that the end user 
controls, so I imagine there will always be companies willing to supply 
them.

My primary fear regarding TCPA is the remote attestation component. I 
can easily picture Microsoft deciding that they do not like Samba and 
decide to make it so that Windows boxes simply cannot communicate with 
it for domain, filesystem, or authentication purposes. All they need do 
is require that the piece on the other end be signed by Microsoft. Heck 
they could render http agent spoofing useless if they decide to make it 
so that only IE could connect to ISS. Again though, doing so would piss 
off a great many of their customers, some of who are slowly jumping ship 
to other solutions anyway.

--
Mark Allen Earnest
Lead Systems Programmer
Emerging Technologies
The Pennsylvania State University


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Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-04 Thread Eugen Leitl
On Wed, Feb 02, 2005 at 05:30:33PM +0100, Erwann ABALEA wrote:

 Please stop relaying FUD. You have full control over your PC, even if this

Please stop relaying pro-DRM pabulum. The only reason for Nagscab is
restricting the user's rights to his own files.

Of course there are other reasons for having crypto compartments in your
machine, but the reason Dell/IBM is rolling them out is not that.

 one is equiped with a TCPA chip. See the TCPA chip as a hardware security
 module integrated into your PC. An API exists to use it, and one if the
 functions of this API is 'take ownership', which has the effect of
 erasing it and regenerating new internal keys.

Really? How interesting. Please tell us more.

-- 
Eugen* Leitl a href=http://leitl.org;leitl/a
__
ICBM: 48.07078, 11.61144http://www.leitl.org
8B29F6BE: 099D 78BA 2FD3 B014 B08A  7779 75B0 2443 8B29 F6BE
http://moleculardevices.org http://nanomachines.net


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Description: PGP signature


Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-04 Thread Erwann ABALEA
On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Dan Kaminsky wrote:

 Uh, you *really* have no idea how much the black hat community is
 looking forward to TCPA.  For example, Office is going to have core
 components running inside a protected environment totally immune to
 antivirus.

How? TCPA is only a cryptographic device, and some BIOS code, nothing
else. Does the coming of TCPA chips eliminate the bugs, buffer overflows,
stack overflows, or any other way to execute arbitrary code? If yes, isn't
that a wonderful thing? Obviously it doesn't (eliminate bugs and so on).

  Since these components are going to be managing
 cryptographic operations, the well defined API exposed from within the
 sandbox will have arbitrary content going in, and opaque content coming
 out.  Malware goes in (there's not a executable environment created that
 can't be exploited), sets up shop, has no need to be stealthy due to the
 complete blockage of AV monitors and cleaners, and does what it wants to
 the plaintext and ciphertext (alters content, changes keys) before
 emitting it back out the opaque outbound interface.

I use cryptographic devices everyday, and TCPA is not different than the
present situation. No better, no worse.

-- 
Erwann ABALEA [EMAIL PROTECTED] - RSA PGP Key ID: 0x2D0EABD5

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Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-02 Thread R.A. Hettinga
http://online.wsj.com/article_print/0,,SB110727370814142368,00.html

The Wall Street Journal

  February 1, 2005 11:04 a.m. EST

Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

By GARY MCWILLIAMS
Staff Reporter of THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
February 1, 2005 11:04 a.m.


HOUSTON -- Dell Inc. today is expected to add its support to an industry
effort to beef up desktop and notebook PC security by installing a
dedicated chip that adds security and privacy-specific features, according
to people familiar with its plans.

Dell will disclose plans to add the security features known as the Trusted
Computing Module on all its personal computers. Its support comes in the
wake of similar endorsements by PC industry giants Advanced Micro Devices
Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co., Intel Corp. and International Business Machines
Corp. The technology has been promoted by an industry organization called
the Trusted Computing Group.

The company is also expected to unveil new network PCs.


-- 
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The Internet Bearer Underwriting Corporation http://www.ibuc.com/
44 Farquhar Street, Boston, MA 02131 USA
... however it may deserve respect for its usefulness and antiquity,
[predicting the end of the world] has not been found agreeable to
experience. -- Edward Gibbon, 'Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire'

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RE: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-02 Thread Trei, Peter
Seeing as it comes out of the TCG, this is almost certainly
the enabling hardware for Palladium/NGSCB. Its a part of
your computer which you may not have full control over.

Peter Trei


Tyler Durden
 ANyone familiar with computer architectures and chips able to 
 answer this 
 question:
 
 That chip...is it likely to be an ASIC or is there already 
 such a thing as 
 a security network processor? (ie, a cheaper network 
 processor that only 
 handles security apps, etc...)

 
 -TD
 
 From: R.A. Hettinga [EMAIL PROTECTED]
 HOUSTON -- Dell Inc. today is expected to add its support to 
 an industry
 effort to beef up desktop and notebook PC security by installing a
 dedicated chip that adds security and privacy-specific 
 features, according
 to people familiar with its plans.
 
 Dell will disclose plans to add the security features known 
 as the Trusted
 Computing Module on all its personal computers. Its support 
 comes in the
 wake of similar endorsements by PC industry giants Advanced 
 Micro Devices
 Inc., Hewlett-Packard Co., Intel Corp. and International 
 Business Machines
 Corp. The technology has been promoted by an industry 
 organization called
 the Trusted Computing Group.
 
 

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RE: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-02 Thread Erwann ABALEA
On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Trei, Peter wrote:

 Seeing as it comes out of the TCG, this is almost certainly
 the enabling hardware for Palladium/NGSCB. Its a part of
 your computer which you may not have full control over.

Please stop relaying FUD. You have full control over your PC, even if this
one is equiped with a TCPA chip. See the TCPA chip as a hardware security
module integrated into your PC. An API exists to use it, and one if the
functions of this API is 'take ownership', which has the effect of
erasing it and regenerating new internal keys.

-- 
Erwann ABALEA [EMAIL PROTECTED] - RSA PGP Key ID: 0x2D0EABD5

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Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-02 Thread Ian G
Erwann ABALEA wrote:
On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Trei, Peter wrote:
 

Seeing as it comes out of the TCG, this is almost certainly
the enabling hardware for Palladium/NGSCB. Its a part of
your computer which you may not have full control over.
   

Please stop relaying FUD. You have full control over your PC, even if this
one is equiped with a TCPA chip. See the TCPA chip as a hardware security
module integrated into your PC. An API exists to use it, and one if the
functions of this API is 'take ownership', which has the effect of
erasing it and regenerating new internal keys.
 

So .. the way this works is that Dell  Microsoft
ship you a computer with lots of nice multimedia
stuff on it.  You take control of your chip by erasing
it and regenerating keys, and then the multimedia
software that you paid for no longer works?
I'm just curious on this point.  I haven't seen much
to indicate that Microsoft and others are ready
for a nymous, tradeable software assets world.
iang
--
News and views on what matters in finance+crypto:
   http://financialcryptography.com/
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Re: Dell to Add Security Chip to PCs

2005-02-02 Thread Dan Kaminsky
Uh, you *really* have no idea how much the black hat community is 
looking forward to TCPA.  For example, Office is going to have core 
components running inside a protected environment totally immune to 
antivirus.  Since these components are going to be managing 
cryptographic operations, the well defined API exposed from within the 
sandbox will have arbitrary content going in, and opaque content coming 
out.  Malware goes in (there's not a executable environment created that 
can't be exploited), sets up shop, has no need to be stealthy due to the 
complete blockage of AV monitors and cleaners, and does what it wants to 
the plaintext and ciphertext (alters content, changes keys) before 
emitting it back out the opaque outbound interface.

So, no FUD, you lose :)
--Dan

Erwann ABALEA wrote:
On Wed, 2 Feb 2005, Trei, Peter wrote:
 

Seeing as it comes out of the TCG, this is almost certainly
the enabling hardware for Palladium/NGSCB. Its a part of
your computer which you may not have full control over.
   

Please stop relaying FUD. You have full control over your PC, even if this
one is equiped with a TCPA chip. See the TCPA chip as a hardware security
module integrated into your PC. An API exists to use it, and one if the
functions of this API is 'take ownership', which has the effect of
erasing it and regenerating new internal keys.
 


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