Linux System Security: The Administrator's Guide to Open Source Security Tools (Prentice Hall Series in Computer Networking and Distributed)

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9780130470119: Linux System Security: The Administrator's Guide to Open Source Security Tools (Prentice Hall Series in Computer Networking and Distributed)

A tutorial guide to securing your system using LINUX-based open source tools. Covers account and password security, e-mail and directory security, intrusion detection, how to design and implement a firewall.

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Review:

In their introduction, the authors of Linux System Security acknowledge that there's no magic bullet as far as security is concerned. Security-minded system administration is a process of constant revision. They promise, though, that "if you follow the procedures outlined in this book, you will certainly reduce your level of vulnerability". They deliver on that promise in spades. Using Red Hat Linux as their demonstration environment, the authors explain how to use a suite of publicly available tools to analyse, protect and monitor your machines and networks. They approach their subject from a practical standpoint, emphasising software and its use while referring the reader (with copious bibliographic notes) to more specialised works for more 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. They first show how a bad guy would use Crack to gain unauthorised access to a machine over a network, then get into the "white hat" applications of the program as a security tool for pre-emptively 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 6.0. Covered software and commands include Pluggable Authentication Modules (PAM), OPIE, syslog, sudo, xinetd, Secure Shell (SSH), Crack, tiger, Tripwire, The Cryptographic Filesystem (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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