[E-Lang] Java 2 "Security" (was: Re: Welcome Chris Skalka and
ScottSmith of Johns Hopkins)
Wed, 03 Jan 2001 11:25:36 +0000
Ken Kahn wrote:
> From: Marc Stiegler <email@example.com>
> > Lastly, I do hope everyone understands that the ability to "sign" applets
> > and applications has nothing to do with security. Signing apps is what
> > marketing people propose when technical people explain that real security
> > not possible; it allows the tool developer to blame the victim when a
> > app engages in malicious action (hey, the victim authorized the app,
> > he? It's his own fault).
> I guess I don't understand. When I accept something signed by say Microsoft,
> then unless the key used to sign it was stolen and not revoked then I can
> trust it as much as a CD-ROM I bought from Microsoft. While that may not be
> enough security for some purposes or contexts, to me that is a lot more
> security than if I run some unsigned code.
An unfortunate choice of signers. But yes, this is the marketing
argument - if it goes wrong, there's someone to blame.
> Maybe it would even be possible to successfully sue the signer of the app if
> it engages in malicious action.
Exploits for various commercial software are published daily. I have yet
to hear of anyone even attempting to sue the vendor for the fact that
those are possible, let alone succeeding.
"There is no limit to what a man can do or how far he can go if he
doesn't mind who gets the credit." - Robert Woodruff