Simon Willison’s Weblog

Items tagged security, privacy

Filters: security × privacy ×


Using achievement stats to estimate sales on steam (via) Really interesting data leak exploit here: Valve’s Steam API was showing the percentage of users that gained a specific achievement up to 16 decimal places—which inadvertently leaked their exact usage statistics, since if 0.012782207690179348 percent of players get an achievement the only possible input is 8 players out of 62,587. # 9th August 2018, 9:03 am

Protecting Against HSTS Abuse (via) Any web feature that can be used to persist information will eventually be used to build super-cookies. In this case it’s HSTS—a web feature that allows sites to tell browsers “in the future always load this domain over HTTPS even if the request specified HTTP”. The WebKit team caught this being exploited in the wild, by encoding a user identifier in binary across 32 separate sub domains. They have a couple of mitigations in place now—I expect other browser vendors will follow suit. # 19th March 2018, 10:21 pm

Why do some people disable JavaScript in their browser?

For security reasons.

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You Deleted Your Cookies? Think Again (via) Flash cookies last longer than browser cookies and are harder to delete. Some services are sneakily “respawning” their cookies—if you clear the regular tracking cookie it will be reinstated from the Flash data next time you visit a page. # 17th August 2009, 3:23 pm

eval() Kerfuffle. The ability to read supposedly private variables in Firefox using a second argument to eval() will be removed in Firefox 3.1. # 2nd July 2008, 9:24 pm

Since 9/11, approximately three things have potentially improved airline security: reinforcing the cockpit doors, passengers realizing they have to fight back and—possibly—sky marshals. Everything else—all the security measures that affect privacy—is just security theater and a waste of effort.

Bruce Schneier # 29th January 2008, 12:14 pm

Designing for a security breach

User account breaches are inevitable. We should take that in to account when designing our applications.

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non-consensual http user tracking using caches. Interesting security issue involving HTTP caching headers # 20th January 2004, 10:37 pm