Initial draft of privilege escalation policy

Stephen John Smoogen smooge at
Sun Jan 24 01:19:43 UTC 2010

On Sat, Jan 23, 2010 at 4:58 PM, Steve Grubb <sgrubb at> wrote:
> On Wednesday 20 January 2010 01:50:21 pm Stephen John Smoogen wrote:
>> >> * Write to system logs (with the exception that the 'cause to be
>> >> performed' provision is waived in this case)
>> >
>> > Huh ? The mere fact of me logging in will cause system logs to be
>> > written...
>> You are not writing directly to /var/log/messages. You log in and
>> login sends a message to syslogd which writes to the log.
> Syslog has *no* integrity guarantees, only the audit logs do. Any user can run
> the /usr/bin/logger program and flood syslog. You can also call openlog() and
> tell it you are the kernel. Syslog is worthless from a security PoV.

I was talking a different type of integrity (i think it is integrity).
A user might be able to run logger over and over but a user can not
'cat /dev/null > /var/log/messages' and have it null the file out.

Couldn't even the audit logs be 'played' with in a default system by
running a program that hit a couple of rules over and over again?
[Well I think it would used to because of a bad rule I once crafted to
watch access to /etc/shadow and a program that checked to see if the
file had been changed.]  Yes audit and the kernel can be set up to
shut down the system if it fills but in the default system is that the

> -Steve

Stephen J Smoogen.

Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp. Or what's a heaven for?
-- Robert Browning

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