Open Source Market Segment LS
Open Source Market Segment RS
Sunday, 05 April 2015 08:33

Linux Australia server hacked, personal information may have been stolen Featured

By

A public server belonging to Linux Australia, the umbrella group for Linux user groups in the country, was breached on March 22, and the personal information of members may have been stolen.

Detailing the breach in a post to the main mailing list, the organisation's president, Joshua Hesketh, wrote yesterday that the breach had been discovered during an investigation as to why a large number of error reporting emails had been generated by a server hosting the organisation's conference management system. known as Zookeepr.

Linux Australia hosts an annual national conference known as LinuxConf at various venues and also sponsors a number of smaller events catering to different open-source technologies.

The server which generated the error emails hosted the conference systems for the national conferences of 2013, 2014 and 2015, and for PyCon Australia 2013 and 2014, the latter two being conferences devoted to the Python programming language.

When the errors were investigated on March 24, it was discovered that between 4am and 6am on March 22, the server had been breached by an individual using what Hesketh described as "a currently unknown vulnerability to trigger a remote buffer overflow and gain root-level access to the server".

He wrote that a remote access tool was installed, and the server was rebooted to load this software into memory. "A botnet command and control was subsequently installed
and started. During the period the individual had access to the Zookeepr server, a number of Linux Australia's automated backup processes ran, which included the dumping of conference databases to disk."

While there was no indication that personal information had been lost, Hesketh said the organisation was operating with the worst case scenario in mind. The database dumps that occurred during the breach "include information provided during conference registration – first and last names, physical and email addresses, and any phone contact details provided, as well as a hashed version of the user password".

Hesketh said that as the organisation used a third party to handle credit card payments, there would be no banking or credit card details in the database dumps.

Asked whether the attacker had physical access to the server, Hesketh said: "There is no evidence of the attacker having physical access. As such, we believe it was a remote attack."


Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here

GRAND OPENING OF THE ITWIRE SHOP

The much awaited iTWire Shop is now open to our readers.

Visit the iTWire Shop, a leading destination for stylish accessories, gear & gadgets, lifestyle products and everyday portable office essentials, drones, zoom lenses for smartphones, software and online training.

PLUS Big Brands include: Apple, Lenovo, LG, Samsung, Sennheiser and many more.

Products available for any country.

We hope you enjoy and find value in the much anticipated iTWire Shop.

ENTER THE SHOP NOW!

INTRODUCING ITWIRE TV

iTWire TV offers a unique value to the Tech Sector by providing a range of video interviews, news, views and reviews, and also provides the opportunity for vendors to promote your company and your marketing messages.

We work with you to develop the message and conduct the interview or product review in a safe and collaborative way. Unlike other Tech YouTube channels, we create a story around your message and post that on the homepage of ITWire, linking to your message.

In addition, your interview post message can be displayed in up to 7 different post displays on our the iTWire.com site to drive traffic and readers to your video content and downloads. This can be a significant Lead Generation opportunity for your business.

We also provide 3 videos in one recording/sitting if you require so that you have a series of videos to promote to your customers. Your sales team can add your emails to sales collateral and to the footer of their sales and marketing emails.

See the latest in Tech News, Views, Interviews, Reviews, Product Promos and Events. Plus funny videos from our readers and customers.

SEE WHAT'S ON ITWIRE TV NOW!

BACK TO HOME PAGE
Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous

WEBINARS ONLINE & ON-DEMAND

GUEST ARTICLES

VENDOR NEWS

Guest Opinion

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News

Comments