100s of pages of documentation is a promising start for any open source project.
Also explains why it's 200,000 lines of code, for something that should be an order of magnitude smaller.
If they had chosen a newer language you didn't approve of, you would have glibly dismissed their engineering decision as "being swayed by fashion."
Since they chose Java, though, the engineers are being "professional" and anyone saying that their decision was swayed by fashion is being "ridiculous," claiming to have a "window into the operational decisions of NSA."
A little bias here perhaps?
The guy from the NSA was hands down the biggest evil piece of shit I have ever experienced in my life. The way he talked, what he said, and the fact that he was given free reign to commit crimes in his training, which he openly bragged about, made me want to murder the guy right then and there.
I lost any and all respect for what the government and the NSA do.
I'm not trying to defend this guy, certainly it's a big problem if he did what he said, but you can't fix something when you paint the whole fucking thing with a brush you picked up looking at one of the uglier parts.
It'll be a challenge because Label security slows things down quite a bit.
a) The code will be open source - the community can verify the code for anything untoward
b) Given the nature of the product, most implementations are going to be behind a firewall anyway, with the storage layer talking to business logic. Even if there was a backdoor, and I'm sure there isn't, not sure how NSA could get in.
Do you think there's a backdoor in NSA's open-source algorithm for SHA-1 too?
I applaud the government for putting tax dollars back into open source. My only gripe is the lack of transparency as to what this is primarily used for within the NSA (to be expected I guess). I generally like to know what I'm helping commit code to go do - although granted you have no idea what other open source projects are used for regardless of whether the lead sponsor is government or private company.
Unless a "please don't use this code for evil" license is legally binding, that's just the nature of open source.
Security flaws can be extremely subtle and 200,000 lines of code is a lot to review... Given that there's plausible deniability (we didn't do it intentionally, it was a genuine bug!), if you were them, wouldn't it at least cross your mind to try it?
Also, at some point, if it becomes popular, some sysadmin at a large foreign government agency or company will forget to firewall off a box running it (ignoring that they could also be connecting back directly - automatic updates anyone?)
It's likely just used exactly how you think it would be; to hold massive amounts of key/value data. No doubt, the NSA likely has tons of data to work with. A NoSQL approach would be seemingly beneficial for this use case.
How dare you claim I am not deadly serious about the NSA putting a back door in a database that is intended to be secure for the internet. How. Dare. You!
I've seen a possible back door or two in this or that, but nothing like "every crypto system ever".
If you have evidence of a back door in AES, SHA-2, or anything NIST has standardized (other than Dual_EC_DRBG or openly weakened stuff like export SSL) lots of people would like to hear about it.
They also reduced the key length from 64 to 56 bits. I found this suspicious and didn't accept the explanation that those 8 bits were needed for "parity". Yet, respected cryptographers say this actually brings the key size more in line with the effective strength. So those additional 8 bits in the key were not contributing to the security and it improves the "truth in labeling".
Why would they build weaknesses into standard blocks, the biggest consumer of which is the US government itself?
When the NSA had at times insisted on an upper limit for a protocol's security (e.g., export crypto), they usually would require a simple upper limit on the number of secret bits in the key. When they've submitted fixes they tend to be elegant and minimal (e.g. SHA-0 to SHA-1).
I don't know much about security, but I am vaguely aware that there were some efforts by various governments to control, regulate, weaponize and even outlaw crypto, but I don't know where these effort have left us. Are there any crypto systems with acknowledged backdoors? Are there any which are not only widely considered to be secure, but are known to have actually prevented three-letter agencies from getting their way?
That's just from a quick google. Back in the day there were stories of "A Visit from Mr. Brown" or something like that. The NSA or "some agency" would go around to anyone making crypto or operating systems and ask to be given backdoors in exchange for deals on export restrictions. Periodically a government agency in another country would find them and we'd be embarrassed. These days it's not as common since crypto exports aren't restricted (much) so the threat of, "If you don't add a backdoor we'll label your software a weapon and you can't sell it to the world." doesn't work.
Then again, could all just be a huge conspiracy.....mwhahahaah.
So other than this, are there any other NSA "backdoors in everything from crypto systems, operating systems, to even backdoors themselves"?
The great thing about backdoors is, when they get discovered they have perfect plausible deniability. "Oh that key named NSAKEY isn't for the NSA it's for...uh...this other agency. Yeah that's it! It's not even a key. Right Bruce? Right?!"
The great thing about people accusing others of subterfuge is how it may never reach a suitable end.
How do we know Zed Shaw is not a shill for those opposing those for whom Bruce Schneier is a shill?? What to do!
It would be most plausible to have direct access to the build infrastructure, which in turn would give access to ... without the hoops of going through Oracle and IBM or whatever corporate projects.
And if you read the spiegel article (which has to do) with Ben's past-present, it is clear, that the USA is on the "offensive". The surest way to discredit any anonymity provider for whistle-blowers is to discredit the providers. Which has just happened in the last few days (note, that the contents of the 7z itself was already past 0-day, and therefore valueless, as a USA Official noted in the article).
svn co https://svn.apache.org/repos/asf/incubator/accumulo
And regardless, all of the filtering would have to occur at the application layer, meaning you'd have to wrap every get/scan to have it do the filtering for you. The Accumulo way also gets you some efficiency because it never even has to transfer the cells that get filtered by the permissions (or even fully read their content from disk, possibly).
Even though each cell isn't separately encrypted to get you true security at the cell level (which would destroy your performance, I'd guess), this seems like a huge win if you want to have permissions at the cell level.
So NoSQL approach makes all those skiddies SQLi attacks moot.
Still 200k lines of code = ~2000 bugs...
So, opening it to the public will expose (some) of those, and fixes will be created.
Now, when are you going to show off that really kool advanced A.I. you guys are sitting on!