Archive for June, 2011


So when did RSA start shipping *your* replacement tokens?

June 7, 2011


It appears it was a seed compromise after all.  You need new tokens, and you need them months ago.  Cleartext token use is one way that someone could start gathering your tokens en masse.  An even scarier problem you are open to is a keylogger or other workstation compromise that has captured a token being used.

Pretend there was a keylogger trojan on one of your user’s workstations back in 2009.  Before it was removed/wiped/whatever, someone was able to capture a VPN login with username, tokencode, and PIN.  You know, “juser/908235123456”.  Oh, and for grins, the trojan also logged a decent timestamp:  “03/04/2009 17:34”.

Recovering the token based on this capture is a matter of grinding to find the appropriate seed.  The attacker just has to crank through each seed with nearby clock values (to account for drift), and id the seed that matches the tokencode generated…908235.  Now the attacker can simulate the correct token and pretend to be juser at will.

This breach not only put you in danger from the moment it happened (which is necessarily prior to when it was detected by RSA, which was before it  was reported by RSA…), it adds value to historical captures of SecurID authentications. Depending on when your tokens expire and how often you force PIN changes, that could be very, very bad.