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Re: handling of Linux kernel vulnerabilities (was: CVE request - Linux kernel: VFAT slab-based buffer overflow)
From: Greg KH <greg () kroah com>
Date: Tue, 5 Mar 2013 09:20:49 +0800

On Mon, Mar 04, 2013 at 10:12:56PM +0100, Eric Lacombe wrote:
Hi,

Le lundi 4 mars 2013 11:48:58, Greg KH a écrit :
On Sun, Mar 03, 2013 at 10:39:30PM -0500, Michael Gilbert wrote:
I was getting encouraged by the recent anger-centric posts, the "what
is it that we're supposed to do better?" ones. That gave me some
encouragement that there was the possibility of positive change, but
the "we're not going to make users more unsafe by telling them about
issues affecting them" is a persistence of the denial state.  That
logic completely violates the known idiom that knowledge is power:
give users the knowledge that they need to protect themselves, and
they will; starve them of that knowledge, and they remain vulnerable.

That's a load of crap.

Seriously, you know it only benefits the "bad guys" if I were to say,
"This patch just went into Linus's tree that fixes a security problem
that you can exploit in this manner".  No user would have a chance to
fix their systems before the vulnerability was added to the
"ultra-sploit" tool and everyone would have their systems trashed.

I think there's a difference between disclosing the vulnerability and 
disclosing it with a related exploit. The first one allows to fulfill what 
Michael Gilbert explains without the consequences that you focus on.

You really think there is a difference?  I assert that there is none,
and history has shown that this is the case, but feel free to prove me
wrong.

And as Michael Gilbert insisted on, I deeply think that the asymmetry of the 
problem should be taken into account for defining the way of dealing with 
security flaws.

Then why do we even have the linux-distros list at all?

greg k-h


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