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Re: [Full-disclosure] Microsoft DNS resolver: deliberately sabotagedhosts-file lookup
From: "Geo." <geoincidents () nls net>
Date: Thu, 20 Apr 2006 08:18:40 -0400

MSN and MSDN.  It is to keep hosts file entries from taking users to
phishing sites where they may enter credentials that could be stolen.

So you agree with me, that it's more for passport functionality than to
allow trojaned users to get to windows update.

It's not Microsoft's job to protect Symantec customers.

No it's not, it's Microsoft's job to protect windows users, millions of who
use NortonAV. But it would seem that MS is more interested in protecting
their user tracking information than the users.

Because "hosts" is a simple text file that is designed to be edited and
maintained by the administrator of the machine.

It would be trivial to create a hosts editing GUI interface that could
manage a protected hosts file. Does anyone but me long for the days of the
NT team where they wouldn't do something if they couldn't do it right? I
mean what's next, they going to modify firewall settings if the user has
locked out features that are required for windowsupdate or passport to work?

This is really simple.  MyDoom altered the hosts file so people couldn't
go.microsoft.com, so they added an exception list for their sites.

The right way to fix it would have been to ask the user before bypassing
hosts since by your own statements hosts is a file for the administrator to
manage. Perhaps the admin put MS sites in hosts files to keep his users from
updating components on their own?

 The reason it wasn't documented was so that malware authors wouldn't know
bypass it, but now some do.  Oh well, worked for a while.

Oh please lets not justify sneaky stuff that affects a users security
settings by saying it had to be done sneaky so the hackers wouldn't know,
the hackers figure this stuff out in seconds. Just mark this as a stupid
idea and add a popup before it bypasses values in the hosts file so the user
is allowed to permit or deny it. Had they done that I would have defended
their actions, it's when they mess with a users security without asking that
I find it inappropriate behavior for a company like MS.


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