Mozilla 對 WoSign + StartCom 的正式處分

MozillaWoSign + StartCom 的不信任處分出爐了:「Distrusting New WoSign and StartCom Certificates」,最後處分的內容跟之前的討論差不多 (參考先前寫的「Mozilla 對於 WoSign + StartCom 根憑證的新發展:拔除」)。

Mozilla 台灣有放出中文版的說明 (差不多就是英文翻譯的版本):「取消對 WoSign 與 StartCom 新簽發憑證的信任」。

這次比較麻煩的地方在於要信任已經發出的 certificate,而且量太大無法窮舉。所以必須改增加程式碼處理,而這個方法無法對使用 Mozilla CA Certificate Store 的人生效 (因為這包套件只是一堆 pem 檔案,沒辦法放特殊的邏輯進去...)

另外現在 Firefox 是 49 版,要到 51 版才會生效,看起來還會花一陣子...

Firefox 49 將可以吃系統的 Certificate Trust Store

在「Upcoming Changes to Root Certificates in Firefox on Windows」這邊看到 Firefox 49 將會有選項可以讓 Firefox 多吃系統的 Certificate Trust Store:

This feature is available in Firefox 49 and up (currently in beta). To give it a try, set the preference security.enterprise_roots.enabled to true. After that, Firefox should connect successfully to sites using certificates issued by 3rd party root certificates that have been added to the Windows trust database.


These features are still in the early stages, so if you encounter any unexpected behavior, please feel free to file a bug.


Love your country, but never trust its government

Hacker News Daily 上看到的,在 Sun-2 的 bootloader 裡可以看到「Love your country, but never trust its government」這樣的字串:「Why the Sun 2 has the message "Love your country, but never trust its government"」。

這段字串是由 John Gilmore 當時在 Sun 開發時所放入的,John Gilmore 同時也是後來 EFF 創辦人之一,不過當初放入這段字串的目的是為了抓到盜版:

Yes. Vinod Khosla, first President of Sun, came to me at one point and said to put something hidden, triggered in an unexpected way, into the ROM Monitor, so that if somebody cloned the Sun Workstation (violating our software’s copyright), we could do that unexpected thing to the competitor’s demo workstation at a trade show and thereby prove that they had cloned it.

過了三十年後 John Gilmore 被挖出來問的回應也是蠻有趣的... (可以參考原文附上的信件)

而這句話現在回頭看也很經典,尤其是最近各國政府想要在 crypto system 裡面放後門的各種反應。

STARTTLS 的不完整性以及大規模監控電子郵件

在「Don’t count on STARTTLS to automatically encrypt your sensitive e-mails」這邊提到了 STARTTLS 的問題,引用「Neither Snow Nor Rain Nor MITM ... An Empirical Analysis of Email Delivery Security」這篇論文的說明。

SMTP 裡 STARTTLS 的設計雖然可以加密,但仲所皆知,可以阻擋 EHLO 回應結果避免建立 STARTTLS 連線,而讓發送端改用傳統未加密的 SMTP 傳輸。而研究發現其實目前就有大規模的這種監控行為:


目前的想法是發展一套類似 HSTS 的 Trust on first use 設計,也許在這份報告出來後可以加速催生...

Google 發表計算網頁真實性的演算法 (Knowledge-Based Trust)

Slashdot 上看到 Google 發表了計算網頁真實性的演算法,Knowledge-Based Trust (KBT):「Google Wants To Rank Websites Based On Facts Not Links」,原始的論文 PDF 檔案可以在「Knowledge-Based Trust: Estimating the Trustworthiness of Web Sources」這邊取得。

論文本身的原理不難懂 (其實方法相當有趣),主要是給出了三個貢獻。

首先是能夠區分是取出資訊的方法有問題 (extract 的演算法不夠好),或是網站本身就給出錯誤的資訊:

Our main contribution is a more sophisticated probabilistic model, which can distinguish between two main sources of error: incorrect facts on a page, and incorrect extractions made by an extraction system.


Our second contribution is a new method to adaptively decide the granularity of sources to work with: if a specific webpage yields too few triples, we may aggregate it with other webpages from the same website. Conversely, if a website has too many triples, we may split it into smaller ones, to avoid computational bottlenecks (Section 4).


The third contribution of this paper is a detailed, large-scale evaluation of the performance of our model.

KBT 並不是要取代 PageRank,而是跟 PageRank 互相配合,可以有效打擊內容農場 (Content farm) 這類網站,畢竟 PageRank 的假設在一般的狀況下是有邏輯的。

在「High PageRank but low KBT (top-left corner)」這段講到了這件事情:

We consider the 15 gossip websites listed in [16]. Among them, 14 have a PageRank among top 15% of the websites, since such websites are often popular. However, for all of them the KBT are in the bottom 50%; in other words, they are considered less trustworthy than half of the websites. Another kind of websites that often get low KBT are forum websites.