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Re: Recommending an IDS system
From: "Bob Radvanovsky" <rsradvan () unixworks net>
Date: Thu, 11 Mar 2004 16:27:19 -0600

re: Cisco IDS, I have a few things to say about Cisco's product: junk.

I had worked for a company in my pre-9/11 days, and we had implemented an
enterprise-wide IDS solution, mostly to spy on employees and vendors (via
extranets).  The solution was at all locations where my previous employer
had Internet access (San Francisco, Denver and Chicago).  The management
believed what Cisco told them, and the product was originally called "Cisco
Secure Policy Manager" (CSPM), which interfaced with their NetRangr product
line.  The Netrangrs were decent, but the management of the signatures and
their policies was a cobbed, messed up package.  The durn thing kept
crashing every time the log file area filled up which usually resulted in
rebuilding the entire database -- from scratch.  The entire process would
*consume* approx. 1 day's worth of hammering against the policy management
server that controlled the entire IDS environment.

We worked directly with Cisco Product Development, out of both San Francisco
and Dallas/Houston areas.  Turned out that this product was an "alpha
release", and we were their "guinea pig".  Also, the IT management wanted to
span ALL ports from the various sensors (amounting to over a dozen or so)
into ONE inky-dinky "black box" that was maintained by a "security
monitoring service".  Thing is, is that the INFOSEC group was usually
informed -- several hours later -- that there were keyed-signature attack
attempts against their network.

Nonetheless, against my recommendation, they decided to implement this
cobbled mess into production.  It failed -- multiple times.  Then I was
laid-off due to 9/11, and haven't heard anything since.  Realistically, with
their configuration, and how the IDS environment was installed, they'd never
know that someone was attempting to attack them, until it was too late.  I
strongly NOT recommend the Cisco IDS product line because of this.

Save yourself the embarassment and look for alternative commercial solutions
if your company wants to go "commercial-grade"; otherwise, consider "open
source" as an alternative.  ;)

Cheers.

Bob Radvanovsky [/unixworks]
rsradvan(at)unixworks.com
"knowledge squared is information shared."

DISCLAIMER: As part of my employment agreement with that employer in which I
had signed a non-disclosure agreement (NDA), this was in effect for
approximately two (2) years from date of termination or laid-off period.
That was effective (to me) as of October 31, 2001. Since no longer working
for them (as of October 1, 2001), and having not provided specific details
of their networking environment, nor the name of the company, no breach of
contract has been violated.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Buyer Jr, David" <DBuyer () KaleidaHealth Org>
To: <security-basics () securityfocus com>
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2004 7:51 AM
Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system


I think your talking about the HIDS product. I cant say anything for or
against ISS on that since I haven't used it. I have however tested the
Cisco
HIDS and it is really bad. It is hard to manage and also crashes all the
time (as did the VMS system for the IDS product). Like I said before, ISS
beats Cisco hands down anyway you look at it for their IDS product
(especially the inline Proventia stuff). See for yourself though and have
both of them bring in their appliances and test them yourself.

David Buyer



-----Original Message-----
From: Nero, Nick [mailto:Nick.Nero () disney com]
Sent: Wednesday, March 10, 2004 4:17 PM
To: D B; security-basics () securityfocus com
Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system


Holy cow stay away from ISS, man.  It is a horrible product.  Were I to do
it all over again, I would push for Snort over their solution.  We
recently
had 20 tech support people from ISS onsite telling us that they still
don't
know why it is crashing Win2k and Solaris boxes (core dumps!) after 1 year
of chasing bugs down on version 6.5.  And of course they are saying if we
upgrade to version 7.0 everything will be fine.  But they just had a
security hole in the agent for 7.0, so it doesn't look like they made that
much progress.  Seriously, we have it disabled on over half of our servers
because it was either crashing them outright (tclproc.exe likes to eat
100%
of the CPU), or it blocks traffic even when configured not to do so.

Stay away.  I hear Cisco's Okena/CSA is pretty awesome.

Nick Nero
CISSP, MCSE (2k3/2k/NT), CCNA
The Walt Disney Company



-----Original Message-----
From: D B [mailto:be281 () bfn org]
Sent: Wednesday, March 10, 2004 7:54 AM
To: security-basics () securityfocus com
Subject: Re: Recommending an IDS system

In-Reply-To: <3BAFCFDABE11C64DA68B005B0682BB84BF1B18 () cnbmail cnb-waco com>

Last week I sent a bunch of people some of my information on Cisco and ISS
systems. Could someone post it here again or email me it. I have been
getting more requests for it and I dont want to write it up all over
again.
I know, I should have saved it in the "sent mail" folder but it got
deleted.
Thanks in advance.



David Buyer





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Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system

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Thread-Topic: Recommending an IDS system

Thread-Index: AcQFShDFzrn8axlQRSKMnBaG6NqgzQAABqwA

From: "Josh Mills" <JMills () cnbwaco com>

To: "Buyer Jr, David" <DBuyer () KaleidaHealth Org>,

<security-basics () securityfocus com>



I setup a dragon solution about a year ago and it seemed like it was =

very difficult to configure when compared to all the rest of the
systems =

partially because of the way you had to go online and get a license for
=

each service then download a key and try to load the key and make it
all =

work together. This may have all changed by now but at the time i had a
=

ton of trouble getting it installed.=20



-----Original Message-----

From: Buyer Jr, David [mailto:DBuyer () KaleidaHealth Org]

Sent: Monday, March 08, 2004 6:59 AM

To: security-basics () securityfocus com

Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system=20





Havent used that one but Enterasys is a pretty good company.



David Buyer







-----Original Message-----

From: eeefm [mailto:eeefm () singnet com sg]

Sent: Sunday, March 07, 2004 2:13 AM

To: 'Buyer Jr, David'; security-basics () securityfocus com

Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system=20





What you think of Dragon ? Thank you.



-----Original Message-----

From: Buyer Jr, David [mailto:DBuyer () KaleidaHealth Org]=20

Sent: Wednesday, March 03, 2004 1:29 AM

To: 'security-basics () securityfocus com'

Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system=20





We have been using Cisco IDS systems for a number of years and recently

switched over to the new ISS Proventia Series appliances. I have worked

with both extensively and I have to say that the ISS solution is MUCH

better than the Cisco solution. Some of the big differences are that
the

ISS people get out a sig about 2 weeks before Cisco even touches it.

Also, the Cisco sensors don't have a way of automatically downloading

and installing the new sigs. Its all a manual process that is a pain in

the A** Reporting is much much better and faster on the ISS as well.

There are many more advantages of going with ISS so if you need anymore

info email me. I still have all my data sheets that I did when we were

testing all the solutions.



PS - go with the inline stuff (IPS). Snort also has an inline patch

available.



David Buyer







-----Original Message-----

From: Josh Mills [mailto:JMills () cnbwaco com]

Sent: Monday, March 01, 2004 6:19 PM

To: Reza Kordi; Andy Cuff; security-basics () securityfocus com

Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system=20





I have implemented a new cisco ids solution and i am very pleased with

it! the signatures are highly tunable for a commercial package and it

seems to be pretty stable. the sensor itself runs on redhat so maybe it

isnt that much different than snort.



-----Original Message-----

From: Reza Kordi [mailto:rk () 4unet net]

Sent: Monday, March 01, 2004 2:03 PM

To: 'Andy Cuff'; security-basics () securityfocus com

Subject: RE: Recommending an IDS system=20





Hi Andy



How good can vendor independant IDS solutions (Specially Opensource)

work in an Enterprise Cisco Based network?



What do you think about Cisco IDS solutions?





Best Regards

Mit freundlichen Gr=FCssen

Meilleures Salutations

med vennlig hilsen

=20

Reza Kordi





-----Original Message-----

From: Andy Cuff [mailto:lists () securitywizardry com]=20

Sent: Samstag, 28. Februar 2004 11:21

To: Matthew MacAulay; security-basics () securityfocus com

Subject: Re: Recommending an IDS system=20

Importance: Low



Hi Mat,

I was faced with the same dilemma some years back, my site below
details

the various technologies you can bring to bear.  I also wrote an
article

for SecurityFocus regarding deploying IDS from a vendor neutral

standpoint http://wwwsecurityfocus.com/infocus/1754



I'd suggest starting simply and building up but always keep the defence

in depth end goal in sight.  Also, don't forget that in addition to

detecting attacks you have to react to them also.  If you need further

advice offlist don't hesitate to ask.



Finally, if you go down the Network IPS route there are 2 main

varieties; rate based and content based, I refer to the former as
Attack

Mitigation Systems  they fill an important role but IMHO are not IPS.

Ideally you

should have both varieties.   There are some products that claim to do

both,

but .....



take care

-andy

Talisker Security Tools Directory http://www.securitywizardry.com

----- Original Message -----

From: "Matthew MacAulay" <matthew.macaulay () cobweb couk>

To: <security-basics () securityfocus com>

Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2004 12:36 PM

Subject: Recommending an IDS system







Hello,



I have been tasked with looking at and recommending an IDS system
for=20

my company.



I have been looking at open source products (Snort) which seems to
be=20

a very good system with a lot of community support. My problem is
we=20

are an ASP We want connections to be able to reach our systems for=20

the services we provide. I want to be able to monitor over 100=20

internet facing servers (behind Firewalls and load balancers) and=20

alert / and possibly block non normal traffic / detected attack=20

signatures.



After doing some reading into different methods IDS v IPS, Host v=20

Network, I favour a combination, we have at anyone time up to
50,000=20

concurrent connections to our systems so I have a problem of
scale.=20

One Snort box is just not going to cut it!



Looking at how I can "tap" into the network traffic has been
partially



solved by using IDSVLANS which is supported by our Switch
hardware.=20

(Nortel 8600) So an IDSVLAN could be setup for each of our
existing=20

VLANS and a couple of load balanced IDS boxes per IDSVLAN to alert
to=20

a central server to produce reports / alert / wake people up....=20

Sounds great.



Though I have not looked at it in as much detail as network based
IDS,



I expect I can get a hosts based IDS to also alert (SNMP or what
ever)



to a central server to again produce reports / alerts / wake
people=20

up.



I am interested to here what systems you use to do IDS / IPS. Do
you=20

have in place IDS systems for platforms of a larger or similar
scale?=20

I would like to here from people have who have faced similar=20

challenges

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CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE:=20

This email transmission and any documents, files,=20

or previous e-mail messages attached to it are=20

confidential and intended solely for the use of the=20

individual or entity to whom they are addressed.=20

If you are not the intended recipient, or a person=20

responsible for delivering it to the intended recipient,=20

you are hereby notified that any further review,=20

disclosure, copying, dissemination, distribution, or=20

use of any of the information contained in or attached=20

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If you have received this message in error, please=20

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ISTSEC () KaleidaHealth org or call (716) 859-7777.=20







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any course! All of our class sizes are guaranteed to be 10 students or
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to facilitate


--------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Ethical Hacking at the InfoSec Institute. Mention this ad and get $545 off
any course! All of our class sizes are guaranteed to be 10 students or
less
to facilitate one-on-one interaction with one of our expert instructors.
Attend a course taught by an expert instructor with years of in-the-field
pen testing experience in our state of the art hacking lab. Master the
skills
of an Ethical Hacker to better assess the security of your organization.
Visit us at:
http://www.infosecinstitute.com/courses/ethical_hacking_training.html
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CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE:
This email transmission and any documents, files,
or previous e-mail messages attached to it are
confidential and intended solely for the use of the
individual or entity to whom they are addressed.
If you are not the intended recipient, or a person
responsible for delivering it to the intended recipient,
you are hereby notified that any further review,
disclosure, copying, dissemination, distribution, or
use of any of the information contained in or attached
to this e-mail transmission is strictly prohibited.
If you have received this message in error, please
notify the sender immediately by e-mail, discard
any paper copies, and delete all electronic files
of the message. If you are unable to contact the
sender or you are not sure as to whether you
are the intended recipient, please e-mail
ISTSEC () KaleidaHealth org or call (716) 859-7777.



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any course! All of our class sizes are guaranteed to be 10 students or
less
to facilitate one-on-one interaction with one of our expert instructors.
Attend a course taught by an expert instructor with years of in-the-field
pen testing experience in our state of the art hacking lab. Master the
skills
of an Ethical Hacker to better assess the security of your organization.
Visit us at:
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any course! All of our class sizes are guaranteed to be 10 students or less 
to facilitate one-on-one interaction with one of our expert instructors. 
Attend a course taught by an expert instructor with years of in-the-field 
pen testing experience in our state of the art hacking lab. Master the skills 
of an Ethical Hacker to better assess the security of your organization. 
Visit us at: 
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