RE: Privileges by session

From: Andre van Winssen <>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 2010 20:21:07 +0100
Message-ID: <014a01ca9097$bafee990$30fcbcb0$_at_com>

All you need is access to user$ and the algorithm to brute force and compare calculated hashes with the stored hashes. No need to try to login as the user and get it locked out ! There are lots of implementations for Oracle =<10g and 11g password algorithm already out there. Pete Finnigan even wrote one in plsql.

Just get a smart list of candidate passwords (start with password=username) and try them out using the hash and compare method.  

I would check ALL database accounts. Also the ones with seemingly low privilege. Because they can be turned into baron-von-Munchausens, elevate themselves to higher levels due to the many security vulnerabilities that exist in unpatched oracle databases.  

Get cooperation from the security / risk / internal auditing departments and business representatives and then these checks can all be done in a controlled manner, i.e. without having to disrupt production system availability. Unfortunately I haven't had the privilege of that cooperation.  


Van: Robert Freeman [] Verzonden: vrijdag 8 januari 2010 18:52
Aan:; Andre van Winssen CC:; Onderwerp: Re: Privileges by session  

>> have you seen auditors actually use tooling to perform password sanity
checks on databases subject to SarbanesOxley, HIPAA, PCI or any >> number of other legislated security policies ?
One issue you run into is if you have automated account locking... the sanity checking can cause accounts to get locked out. If you have systems where account locking is not enabled, then I would have no objection to such testing. Sanity testing of the SYS account password on various systems makes perfect sense to me.  

I have no objections to auditing performing penetration testing as long as it's coordinated with our group and designed to not impact systems. If security is really the goal (and so many places it still just gets lip service it seems like) then I'm of the opinion that all the testing you can do is worthwhile as long as it's under control and well documented and compliant with current security policies.


Robert G. Freeman
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From: Jared Still <> To: Andre van Winssen <> Cc:; Sent: Fri, January 8, 2010 9:16:28 AM
Subject: Re: Privileges by session

On Fri, Jan 8, 2010 at 3:23 AM, Andre van Winssen < <>> wrote:  

have you seen auditors actually use tooling to perform password sanity checks on databases subject to SarbanesOxley, HIPAA, PCI or any number of other legislated security policies ?  

No, I haven't. I have seen penetration tests do that, but never SOX auditors.  

I have seen big shops where fancy database compliancy reports, created by the dbas, were just about enough to let the auditors say "Ok, compliant!" Motto: business comes first, security second.

Reports here are created by the DBA's. Same for Sysops, and application Admins.

Really though, it would be quite difficult for the auditors to accomplish this.

At least in my limited SOX experience, it isn't quite as simple as "Here's my
report, sign it off please".

I generate reports for databases that must comply with Sarbanes Oxley. These reports are reviewed with the Security admin for the app. (how timely, did this just yesterday)

In this particular case, the reports are shown to verify SOD (separation of duties)
so that no one has DBA privileges unless they are warranted.

The auditors must rely on DBA's to provide the information. There are many ways
that a user can have DBA privileges - roles, legitimate roles that have been granted
extra privilges, roles that appear to be system roles but are created to provide
extraordinary privileges, direct grants, execution on packages, ...

You can't really expect an auditor to be able to do all that. Sorry, this goes a bit off topic, as it is more than just checking for password complexity.

Jared Still
Certifiable Oracle DBA and Part Time Perl Evangelist Oracle Blog: <> Home Page: <>    

Received on Fri Jan 08 2010 - 13:21:07 CST

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