Microsoft Offers Security Guide

 
 
By Timothy Dyck  |  Posted 2003-01-06
 
 
 

Microsoft has published a 20-page white paper that details how the company secured its portion of eWeeks OpenHack 4 test.

The paper describes how encryption keys were stored securely, Internet Information Services configuration and hardening, what keys were modified in the Windows 2000 registry for additional security, and how the Microsoft SQL Server database machine was hardened.

It also describes how the IP Security policies on the Microsoft servers were configured to allow remote management using a VPN.

The paper ends by describing the clever trick of using Unicode characters entered using the Alt key and numeric keypad in passwords—Microsoft used this approach in OpenHack, and this technique makes brute-force password attacks extremely difficult.

The paper is available at msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnnetsec/html/openhack.asp.

Id also like to point those implementing Web applications using ASP .Net to a book-length treatment on the topic available free at msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnnetsec/html/secnetlpMSDN.asp.

The 608-page Adobe PDF file is the most detailed resource Ive seen on the topic. The work describes how to authenticate clients, implement access control mechanisms and secure communication links when deploying a Web application on a corporate intranet, an extranet or the open Internet. Every developer writing security-sensitive ASP .Net code should have it as a reference.

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