Azure diaries: can’t access KeyVault

Context: as a tenant administrator you can't inspect KeyVault contents created by other people ("you are unauthorized to view these contents"). Solution: assign yourself appropriate permissions like this: Locate the KeyVault in the Azure portal: go to "Access policies"click "+Add Access Policy"Key permissions: everything under "Key Management Operations" and "Cryptographic Operations"Accordingly for key and certificate … Continue reading Azure diaries: can’t access KeyVault

Unlocking a password-protected hard disk

TL;DR: Recovering data from a password-protected SATA hard disk that was locked by a Thinkpad I wish this post would be as generally valid as the title suggests; at this hour I'm just unspeakably glad to have unlocked a hard disk I didn't even know I had locked and can finally go to bed. What … Continue reading Unlocking a password-protected hard disk

Secure messaging in the browser

By observing news and public discussions I feel that there is a growing awareness of data privacy and an increasing demand for secure person-to-person communication. In order to address my communication needs, I plugged together a few Javascript libraries and started the Webencryption [1] project on Github. What is Webencryption? Webencryption is a rather crude … Continue reading Secure messaging in the browser

RSA is partially cryptographically homomorphic

Homomorphic cryptography [1], should it ever become available as a product, will have an intriguing property: computers will be able to operate on encrypted data without either having to- or being able to decrypt it. Competitive or regulatory pressure leads many organisations to distrust public (or private) clouds with their data and algorithms, so they … Continue reading RSA is partially cryptographically homomorphic

Advanced web security topics

(Last update 28 February 2018) This post discusses web security issues that I come across - so far thankfully mostly by reading about them. It is a work in progress which I'll keep updating. The post title includes "advanced" because the topics discussed here involve clever, non-trivial hacks, are novel at the time of their … Continue reading Advanced web security topics

Securing a development server

In this post I talk about setting up and securely operating development tools like Jenkins and Gitlab on a server connected to the internet. All applications run behind a firewall and a reverse HTTP proxy which allows only HTTP requests from selected users through who authenticate themselves with client certificates. Putting web-facing software on the … Continue reading Securing a development server

Running a website on ip6

I started quite a while ago moving a pet project to ip6. While it doesn't involve any programming per se, it turned out to be quite a complicated process involving multiple configuration steps. Thus, for your enjoyment I present: running a website on ip6 with Ubuntu 14.04 (older versions won't work because their kernel doesn't … Continue reading Running a website on ip6

Reddit as an OAuth provider for a Java backend

OAuth (2) and Java work well together, there are plenty of libraries available which handle the general case and the more specific peculiarities of the various OAuth providers. Despite solid implementations like my favourite Spring Social [1] framework  the state of OAuth is at best fragmented. Not only because Spring Social is not as well … Continue reading Reddit as an OAuth provider for a Java backend