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Hardening Guide for phpList

phpList Hardening Guide Featured Image

This post will outline recommended steps to harden phpList after install to make it reasonably secure.

phpList is the most popular open-source software for managing mailing lists. Like wordpress, they have a phplist.com for paid hosting services and phplist.org for free self-hosting.

Earlier this week, it was announced that phpList had a critical security vulnerability permitting an attacker to bypass authentication and login as an administrator using an incorrect & carefully-crafted password in some cases. This bug is a result of the fact that [a] PHP is a loosely typed language and [b] the phpList team was using the '==' operator to test for equality of the user's hashed password against the DB. This security pitfall has been known in PHP since at least 2010 (a decade ago!), but I'm sure the same mistake will be made again..

Indeed, security is porous. There's no such thing as 100% vulnerability-free code, and phpList is no exception. But if we're careful in adding layers of security to our infrastructure, then we might be able to protect ourselves from certain 0-days.

That said, here's my recommended steps to making your phpList install reasonably secure.

Michael Altfield

Hi, I’m Michael Altfield. I write articles
. . . → Read More: Hardening Guide for phpList

Package Manager Search Commands

In a given week, I touch maybe a half dozen different Operating Systems/Distributions. Some are similar to others (centos, rhel), some--not so much (solaris). The common commands are easy enough to remember ( @ls@ vs @dir@ ), but I always forget how to search through each OS's package manager for a software package. For my reference (and perhaps yours?) here's a list for each of the OSs' package managers I use frequently:

yum - RHEL/CentOS

yum list

apt - Debian/Ubuntu

apt-cache search

pacman - Arch

pacman --sync --search pacman -Ss

portage - Gentoo

emerge --search # pkg names only emerge --searchdesc # pkg names & descriptions emerge -S # alias of --searchdesc  

See Also: "Install 'build-essential' on RHEL/CentOS and OpenSolaris":/wp/?p=231

Michael Altfield

Hi, I’m Michael Altfield. I write articles about opsec, privacy, and devops ➡

About Michael

tech.michaelaltfield.net/

Clone Xen RHEL5 (CentOS 5.2) VM

Hello world! I just updated my whole server environment and, my, things are looking good. Anyway, I had to run through these steps a half dozen times, so I thought I would post it here for myself and (maybe even) others.

Here's the commands I ran to turn a clone of my base RHEL5 (CentOS 5.2) Xen image into another working virtual machine on my RHEL5 (CentoOS 5.2) Xen Host:

Michael Altfield

Hi, I’m Michael Altfield. I write articles about opsec, privacy, and devops ➡

About Michael

tech.michaelaltfield.net/