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Man in the MIddle


Man in the MIddle

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Steve Jones
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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Man in the MIddle

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Hugo Kornelis
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Hi Steve!

SQL Server include a number of encryption technologies, TDE, SSL and more. And unlike Oracle, which charges for encryption features, these are included in the price of SQL Server.

Yes - but only if you buy Enterprise Edition.

The price Oracle charges for its security pack is high (and the idea is ridiculous, at least to me) - but not quite as high as the price a SQL Server customer with a Standard Edition has to pay to gain access to TDE.


Hugo Kornelis, SQL Server MVP
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Steve Jones
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True, TDE is an EE feature, which I think is a mistake. Many of the other encryption technologies are in all versions.

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Sean Terry
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Hugo Kornelis (4/29/2010)
Yes - but only if you buy Enterprise Edition.


It should be noted that SSL connection encryption is baked-in to all editions (including Express), which is the key player in preventing man-in-the-middle attacks. ;-)
richj-826679
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Sean Terry (4/29/2010)


It should be noted that SSL connection encryption is baked-in to all editions (including Express), which is the key player in preventing man-in-the-middle attacks. ;-)


But only if you're using a properly signed cert as stated in the big yellow "Caution" area at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms189067%28v=SQL.105%29.aspx

Then again, since SSL's been broken (google ssl md5 broken), I don't think it's a panacea for any business at risk of MITM attacks.

Rich
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TDE is a great new feature, but so is backup compression and using TDE essentially nullifies the other out. Try both together and see for yourself, although this is not recommended. Encrypted data compresses significantly less than equivalent unencrypted data. If TDE is used to encrypt a database, backup compression will not be able to significantly compress the backup storage. So, Mickeysoft gaves us two great new features in SQL 2008 we really can't use together. Also, please do keep in mind when using TDE that TEMPDB is automatically encrypted when you enable TDE on any database on a server instance and this can cause performance issues with non-encrypted databases using TEMPDB on that server.:-D

"Technology is a weird thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other. ...:-D"
Steve Jones
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SSL doesn't solve everything, but it does reduce some people making attacks. That's why I mention learning more about other network protocols. Perhaps we ought to also be encrypting at an even lower network level using some sort of secure tunneling for clients of SQL Server.

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We recently had a vendor demo demonstrating an attack that is just as easy as MITM. Once attached directly to the server, he was able to then display the sa password. Apparently SQL server keeps the SA password in clear text in memory. If somebody logs on with the SA, it will stay there in memory - even after the connection is closed. Combine this with a MITM attack, and you have no data left to protect.



Jason AKA CirqueDeSQLeil
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