Rust, DevSecOps, AI, and Penetration Testing

As a part of an ongoing effort to maintain you knowledgeable about our newest work, this weblog submit summarizes some latest publications from the SEI within the areas of provide chain assaults, penetration testing, model-based design for cyber-physical programs, Rust, the unified extensible firmware interface (UEFI), DevSecOps, community circulate knowledge, and synthetic intelligence. These publications spotlight the most recent work of SEI technologists in these areas. This submit features a itemizing of every publication, writer(s), and hyperlinks the place they are often accessed on the SEI web site.

Figuring out and Stopping the Subsequent Photo voltaic Winds
by Greg Touhill

On this SEI podcast, Gregory J. Touhill, director of the SEI CERT Division, talks with principal researcher Suzanne Miller concerning the 2020 assault on Photo voltaic Winds software program and methods to forestall a recurrence of one other main assault on key programs which can be in widespread use. Photo voltaic Winds is the title of an organization that offered software program to the U.S. federal authorities. In late 2020, information surfaced a few cyberattack that had already been underway for a number of months and that had reportedly compromised 250 authorities companies, together with the Treasury Division, the State Division, and nuclear analysis labs. Along with compromising knowledge, the assault resulted in monetary losses of greater than $90 million and was in all probability probably the most harmful trendy assaults on software program and software-based companies and authorities companies within the latest previous. The SolarWinds incident demonstrated the challenges of securing programs when they’re the product of advanced provide chains. On this podcast, Touhill discusses matters together with the necessity for programs to be safe by design and safe by default, the significance of transparency within the reporting of vulnerabilities and anomalous system conduct, the CERT Acquisition Safety Framework, the necessity to safe knowledge throughout a variety of disparate units and programs, and ways and methods for people and organizations to safeguard their knowledge and the programs they depend on day by day.
View the podcast.

A Penetration Testing Findings Repository
by Marisa Milder and Samantha Chaves

On this podcast, the SEI CERT Division’s Marisa Midler and Samantha Chaves, a cybersecurity engineer and penetration tester, respectively, discuss with principal researcher Suzanne Miller about an open-source penetration testing findings repository that they created. The repository is a supply of data for energetic listing, phishing, cellular know-how, programs and companies, net functions, and mobile-technology and wireless-technology weaknesses that may very well be found throughout a penetration check. The repository is meant to assist assessors present experiences to organizations utilizing standardized language and standardized names for findings, and to avoid wasting assessors time on report era by having descriptions, normal remediations, and different sources accessible within the repository for his or her use.

The repository is at present an open-source doc hosted on the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Safety Company (CISA) GitHub web site at
View the podcast.

You Can’t Anticipate ROI to Justify Mannequin-Primarily based Design and Evaluation for Cyber Bodily Programs’ Embedded Computing Assets
by Alfred Schenker and Jerome Hugues

The sensible, pragmatic advantages of constructing early architectural fashions of the embedded computing sources for cyber-physical programs (CPS) have been documented and demonstrated. Nevertheless, the speed of adoption of this apply by the contractor neighborhood has been gradual. Empirically, we now have noticed skepticism with respect to the elevated value of constructing these fashions, as being of enough worth to justify their expense. This paper elaborates the the explanation why utilizing conventional strategies, corresponding to return on funding (ROI), to justify the elevated expense (of constructing and sustaining these digital fashions) is insufficient. Alternate methods to quantify and rationalize the advantages are mentioned, however finally the choice to undertake might require a leap of religion.

We start by describing the issue area and developments within the design and implementation of the embedded computing sources for CPS. We talk about the proposed course of change we search: utilizing model-based strategies to scale back integration and check danger. We talk about the potential results of that change on CPS, in addition to our ideas on ROI and the problems that may come up when utilizing ROI. Lastly, we advocate how organizations can transfer ahead with a model-based strategy within the absence of strong ROI knowledge.
Learn the convention paper.

Securing UEFI: An Underpinning Expertise for Computing
by Vijay S. Sarvepalli

Most trendy computer systems have firmware based mostly on a normal referred to as the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI). A typical UEFI-based firmware consists of software program elements from a number of suppliers, code from open-source tasks, and elements from an unique tools producer, corresponding to a laptop computer producer. The software program elements are primarily written in low-level programming languages like C that facilitate direct entry to the {hardware} and bodily reminiscence. These software program elements require high-privilege entry to the central processing unit. The Chain of Belief mannequin within the UEFI normal is designed to allow safe cryptographic verification of those elements, establishing assurances that solely trusted software program is executed through the early boot cycle. However after the boot cycle is full, UEFI nonetheless offers an interface to the working system to allow configuration modifications or software program updates to the firmware. In contrast to the working system, UEFI software program stays invisible to most of us, regardless of its important position within the functioning of a contemporary system. Due to its criticality and invisibility, vulnerabilities in UEFI-related software program entice attackers and pose excessive dangers to system safety. This paper highlights the technical efforts to safe the UEFI-based firmware that serves as a foundational piece of recent computing environments.
Learn the white paper.
Learn the SEI Weblog submit: UEFI: 5 Suggestions for Securing and Restoring Belief.

Understanding Vulnerability Evaluation within the Rust Programming Language
by David Svoboda and Garret Wassermann

Whereas the reminiscence security and safety features of the Rust programming language might be efficient in lots of conditions, Rust’s compiler could be very explicit on what constitutes good software program design practices. Each time design assumptions disagree with real-world knowledge and assumptions, there may be the potential for safety vulnerabilities–and malicious software program that may make the most of these vulnerabilities. On this podcast, David Svoboda and Garret Wassermann, researchers with the SEI’s CERT Division, discover instruments for understanding vulnerabilities in Rust whether or not the unique supply code is offered or not. These instruments are vital for understanding malicious software program the place supply code is commonly unavailable, in addition to commenting on attainable instructions during which instruments and automatic code evaluation can enhance.
View the podcast.

High 5 Challenges to Overcome on Your DevSecOps Journey
by Hasan Yasar and Joseph D. Yankel

Traditionally, lots of dialogue in software program safety centered on the challenge degree, emphasizing code scanning, penetration testing, reactive approaches for incident response, and so forth. At this time, the dialogue has shifted to this system degree to align with enterprise aims. Within the supreme end result of such a shift, software program groups would act in alignment with enterprise targets, organizational danger, and answer structure and would perceive that safety practices are integral to enterprise success. Nevertheless, the shift from project- to program-level considering brings numerous challenges. On this webcast, Hasan Yasar and Joe Yankel talk about the highest 5 challenges and limitations to implementing DevSecOps practices and describe some options for overcoming them.
View the webcast.
Learn the SEI Weblog submit 5 Challenges to Implementing DevSecOps and Easy methods to Overcome Them.

Enhancing Analytics Utilizing Enriched Community Circulate Information
by Timothy J. Shimeall and Katherine Prevost

Traditional device suites which can be used to course of community circulate data cope with very restricted element on the community connections they summarize. These instruments restrict element for a number of causes: (1) to keep up long-baseline knowledge, (2) to give attention to security-indicative knowledge fields, and (3) to assist knowledge assortment throughout massive or advanced infrastructures. Nevertheless, a consequence of this restricted element is that evaluation outcomes based mostly on this knowledge present details about indications of conduct somewhat than data that precisely identifies conduct with excessive confidence. On this webcast, Tim Shimeall and Katherine Prevost talk about methods to use IPFIX-formatted knowledge with element derived from deep packet inspection (DPI) to offer elevated confidence in figuring out conduct.

What attendees will study:

  • trade-offs concerned in gathering varied ranges of detailed community knowledge
  • an instance of study displaying the appliance of DPI in figuring out community behaviors
  • the worth of working in knowledge evaluation environments, leveraging the ability of such processing environments, and the provision of language options and libraries that facilitate evaluation

View the webcast.

Throughout this webcast, Mike Mattarock, technical director for mission and engagement within the SEI’s AI Division, discusses a number of the major high quality attributes guiding design, and the way a subsequent era structure can facilitate an built-in future state.

As synthetic intelligence permeates mission-critical capabilities, it’s paramount to design modular options to make sure speedy evolution and interoperability. Throughout this webcast, we talk about a number of the major high quality attributes guiding such design, and the way a subsequent era structure can facilitate an built-in future state.

What attendees will study:

  • present challenges dealing with AI engineering
  • approaches to selling interoperability throughout AI options
  • concerns for facilitating modularity and reuse in design

View the webcast.

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