CEH (Certified Ethical Hacker) Training

I spent last week in a training class for the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) exam. The first day of class they issued me an EC-Council backpack that contained two text books (1,800 pages worth), one lab manual and one t-shirt. It’s heavy as hell and I can see why they provide the (fairly nice) bag to lug it all around in.

I went into the class expecting to only learn the corporate developed ‘best practices’ for penetration testing and hacking. I walked out of the class believing that anyone could benefit from its teachings. Even a seasoned pentester is bound to learn something.

It teaches a best practices methodology to approaching a penetration test. Just about any category of tool that would be useful in a pentest is covered. Far too many, in some cases. Although, I think it is great to get exposure to more tools than one would generally exposure themselves to.

My pentest toolkit is now stocked with only the best tools and separated into the logical categories that the CEH teaches. It just makes sense.

In a near future post I will be explaining my toolkit, what it contains, how it is organized and how to make your own.

I also end up with some CPE (Continued Professional Education) points to keep my CISSP certification current.

Microsoft offers Apple security advice?

Fresh after the article from security firm Sophos entitled “Sophos recommends Macs for security“, A member of Microsoft’s security team blasts Apple for not having a “security czar” and not communicating with users about security vulnerabilities.

By contrast, he points to Microsoft as a prime example of how to respond to threats, providing well-documented communications and prescriptive “how-to” guidance with alerts that are delivered through email, RSS and deployment tools.

This whole paragraph is absolutely laughable. Lets flash back for a second to Microsoft security bulletin 912840 and my rant regarding it. And now lets re-read that happy little Microsoft fud. Something doesn’t add up, does it?

If that isn’t enough to convince you, lets look at yet another reason why no software vendor should ever adopt Microsoft’s security practices. Two words; Patch Tuesday. Holy god is that a bad model. No matter how bad a vulnerability is, they will sit on the patch (leaving everyone exposed) till the next patch Tuesday. Just because its more convenient for admins.

I, as an admin, would much rather patch frequently, than sit on hands while blatantly exposed to a threat.

Once they work these things out, then (maybe) they can blast other software vendors. Until that time though, they should sit back, shut up and stop making themselves look foolish.