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RE: Finally - Curphey award 2004 to SPI Dynamics
From: <PPowenski () oag com>
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 2004 15:59:36 +0100

In addition to the points below.....

Even though Security awareness should be provided to developers to
understand the implication of creating code it should not be as heavy
burden as it is turning into. The aesoteric aspects that some of the
attacks take and the combination of events to gain access is an entirely
different stream of thought that Developers ususally do not focus on. At
least the ones I have come across.

the core problem related to security with all the api's, tools,
scripting engines, and compilers can be attributed to those who created
them for developers to create code. 
If a developer has to engage in working out for himself the complex
issues of using the api and where it touches the system, its access
control mechanisms, and paths to network then the burden detracts
significantly from getting the job done. Understanding these aspects is
a large undertaking in itself. Most manufacturers do not want many folks
to know these details as well.

If the founders of our set of developer tools had enough insight to
consider this it would probably be much better for all of us.

just my2c
-----Original Message-----
From: Stan Guzik [mailto:SGuzik () ImmediaTech com] 
Sent: 29 June 2004 14:26
To: Mads Rasmussen; Mark Curphey
Cc: webappsec () securityfocus com; Jeff Williams
Subject: RE: Finally - Curphey award 2004 to SPI Dynamics


In my option, whatever it is worth, developers are burdened with
countless issues like security, performance, stability, and etc...
Whenever we can encapsulate security items like input/output validations
and not have the developer spend lots of time on it the better.
Developers should spend time on features and functionality of software
and less time on the above.

As developers we need to get to a point where we have components and
procedures that we plug into our software and it takes care of security
for us.  In an idealistic world developers should not worry about
security, one day we'll get there...  The more we use security
components and the more time we spend improving our components will lead
to more secure software.

One of my developers attended the OWASP AppSec 2004 conference and came
back to me saying "We already do this stuff but he never knew about
it..."  I incorporated the OWASP Guide into our development procedures
and my developers just followed our standards.  As a manager I felt

Does anyone know of any open source components like the one developed by

Stan Guzik


-----Original Message-----
From: Mads Rasmussen [mailto:mads () opencs com br] 
Sent: Tuesday, June 29, 2004 7:47 AM
To: Mark Curphey
Cc: webappsec () securityfocus com; Jeff Williams
Subject: Re: Finally - Curphey award 2004 to SPI Dynamics

Mark Curphey wrote:
Here I am, depressed at the prospect of filling in mountains of
claims from weeks of traveling and approving mundane mails to
about XSS after XSS and along comes a shining light. At last an
security" company that gets it ! Hats of to the folks at SPI and the
Award for 2004 for leading the industry down the right path !


Here is another link http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1759,1617901,00.asp

I don't know about you guys but I have a bad feeling about this. I am 
not sure this is the right path.

The article quotes Caleb Sima, founder and chief technology officer of 
SPI Dynamics saying "It doesn't require developers to learn about 
security," - "You really just need to validate input to eliminate most 
application vulnerabilities."

Shouldn't you at least have a feeling for where the developers makes 
their mistakes to be able to insert the right piece of secure code?

By all means it looks like a cool product, but how much can we trust it?

One of its features is, qoute
"Input Validation objects will check incoming data on web forms to
validate user-supplied input against a set of rules and prevent
parameter manipulation exploits, such as SQL Injection attacks."

Can we trust these "set of rules".
If they opened their technology, the OWASP team could contribute rules 
to such a database and then we just might get somewhere by having a list

of f.ex regular expressions for using the validator classes in .Net or 
input validation in general but that would probably not happen.

I am concerned that products like this just leads to lazy developers.

Jeff what do you think about this? You wanted to start an input 
validation project based on filters, a database like described above 
would be quite handy :o)

Just my two bits

Mads Rasmussen, M.Sc.
Open Communications Security
+55 11 3345 2525

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