Linux System Security: The Administrator's Guide to Open Source Security Tools, Second Edition

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9780130470119: Linux System Security: The Administrator's Guide to Open Source Security Tools, Second Edition

As more companies are moving to Linux for mission-critical applications, security becomes a major issue. This guide explains the pros and cons of the most the valuable open source security tools and is complete with implementation details. It gives detailed instructions on the implementation, configuration, and use of publicly available tools and features of Linux as they relate to Linux security. Essential background information is provided in the book's introductory chapters. Administrators will learn to: Prepare Linux systems for a production environment; Identify vulnerabilities, and planning for security administration; Configure Linux-based firewalls, authentication, and encryption; Secure filesystems, email, web servers, and other key applications; Protect mixed Linux/Unix and Windows environments. New to this Edition: Updated for Redhat 7.2 ; One of the first Linux security books to cover Bastille, a hardening program which tightens system security and can even lock down the entire system in cases where the system is seriously compromised; New chapter on network sniffers and port scanners used to detect intruders; Will Cover Open SSH - the new open source version of a popular suite of connectivity tools which allow you to login into remote computers and execute commands on these computers. Open SSH contains encryption capabilities that encrypts all traffic including passwords.

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Review:

The introduction of Linux System Security acknowledges that there's no magic bullet as far as security is concerned. Security-minded system administration is a process of constant revision. It promises, though, that "[i]f you follow the procedures outlined in this book, you will certainly reduce your level of vulnerability." The book delivers on that promise in spades.

Using Red Hat Linux as the demonstration environment, the authors explain how to use a suite of publicly available tools to analyze, protect, and monitor your machines and networks. They approach the subject from a practical standpoint, emphasizing software and its use while referring the reader (using copious bibliographic notes) to more specialized works for detailed information on cryptography, firewall configuration, and other subjects.

Scott Mann and Ellen Mitchell have done excellent work in combining explanations of the "soft" aspects of security management with the particulars of using software. In a typical section, they explain how to acquire, install, and run Crack, a password breaker. First they show how a bad guy would use Crack to get unauthorized access to a machine over a network; then they explore the "white hat" applications of the program as a security tool for preemptively weeding out weak passwords. More detailed coverage goes to tiger and Tripwire, a pair of powerful auditing and monitoring tools. Along with Maximum Linux Security (which covers more offensive and defensive weapons in less detail), this is one of the two best Linux security books you can own. --David Wall

Topics covered: Linux security practices and tools, as demonstrated under Red Hat Linux 5.2 and 6. Software and commands include Pluggable Authentication Modules (PAM), OPIE, syslog, sudo, xinetd, Secure Shell (SSH), Crack, tiger, Tripwire, The Cryptographic File System (TCFS), and ipchains. The authors discuss administrative policies and procedures along the way.

From the Back Cover:

Lock down your Linux system NOW!

  • Up-to-the-minute security techniques for your entire Linux environment!
  • NEW! In-depth coverage of Bastille, the breakthrough Linux lockdown tool!
  • NEW! Intrusion detection with network sniffers and port scanners
  • NEW! Complete coverage of the OpenSSH encryption suite
  • Firewalls, email, Web services, filesystems, applications, and more
  • Completely updated for RedHat 7.2

Now there's an up-to-the-minute, hands-on guide to using open source tools to protect any Linux system! Completely updated for the newest tools and distributions, Linux System Security, Second Edition covers virtually every facet of Linux security, from firewalls and intrusion detection to authentication and secure Web services. You'll master over a dozen crucial open source security tools, including sudo, portmap, xinetd, tiger, tripwire, ipchains, pam, crack, and more. Along the way, three long-time Linux sysadmins will show you the "gotchas," rules of thumb, and undocumented tricks it would take you years to learn on your own!

  • Preparing Linux systems for a production environment
  • Using Bastille to lock down Linux systems without unnecessarily compromising their functionality
  • Combatting Trojan horses, backdoors, password cracking, buffer overflows, spoofing, DoS, and more
  • OpenSSH: eliminating eavesdropping, connection hijacking, and other network-level attacks
  • Detecting intrusions with network sniffers and port scanners
  • Firewalls, email, Web services, filesystems, applications, and much more
  • Protecting mixed Linux/UNIX(r) environments
  • Includes a concise introduction to security policies

Want the benefits of Linux without the security risks? Get Linux System Security, Second Edition!

Prentice Hall Series on Computer Networking and Distributed Systems, Radia Perlman, Series Advisor

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