Tag Archives: web

Chrome Update Web Forgery

In viewing one of those "…you won’t believe what happens next…" sites, I ran across a pretty well formed fraudulent website attempting to get me to install malware/spyware. I’m used to most of these attempts sounding very alarmist as they try to get me to download and install something.


Other than the Chrome logo and the URL, this is a well formatted and convincing page. It’s even accurate. I was using Chrome 35 on Windows.

Looing at the source:
The "Accept and Install" button would have downloaded "Chrome_Setup.exe". Unfortunately I don’t have a system I want to risk installing this on to see what it actually is.

Yodlee Security

This review was performed on February 5, 2014 and is part of a series of comparisons of financial management sites.

Yodlee Labs has been around for a while. While it doesn’t have the slickest interface, it seems to be compatible with the most financial institutions.

moneycenter.yodlee.com uses a EV certificate with a 2048 bit RSA key.

moneycenter.yodlee.com receives an A- on the Qualys SSL Test run on February 11, 2014. They support TLS v1.2, but they allow SSL v3.0 and prioritize RC4 cipher suites. They also allow 2 key TDES to be negotiated.

Security Claims

  • Yodlee Labs – Security Policy
    • “Data and Password Encryption”
    • “Network Intrusion Detection Systems”
    • “Physical Security Measures”
    • “Rigorous Audits and Inspections”
    • “No Yodlee employees have access to your password.”
    • “The transmission of data is protected using industry recognized encryption standards, such as 128-bit.”
    • “Users’ passwords are transmitted and stored in encrypted format at all times.”
    • “Access to servers requires multiple levels of authentication, including biometric (hand print scan) procedures.”
    • “multiple layers of firewalls are used to guard against unauthorized access to the network.”

Analysis of claims

Yodlee has all of the right security claims. They discuss solid site security and even electronic shielding. The shielding is probably more than is necessary, but it’s nice as long as there’s not a trade off to gain the shielding. They discuss firewalls and IDSs to provide logical network security. The encryption claims of data in transit and encryption of bank passwords is good. That no Yodlee employees have access to your [Yodlee] password, implies that they are hashing your Yodlee password instead of encrypting it. This ensures that someone who manages to compromise the password database cannot decrypt your Yodlee password. They also discuss frequent security audits of their infrastructure.

The two things Yodlee does not mention are how the encryption key for your bank passwords is protected and scanning of the Yodlee website for potential vulnerabilities.


I was able to identify 1 minor inconstancy.

  1. They claim 128-bit encryption; however, they support a cipher suite with a 112-bit key.


Since the the “how” for encrypting passwords is more of a nice to have, and vulnerability scanning might be included in the security audits, I give Yodlee an A- for their security policy.

LearnVest Security

This review was performed on February 1, 2014 and is part of a series of comparisons of financial management sites.

LearnVest mixes financial services, free advice, and account aggregation.

www.learnvest.com uses a EV certificate with a 2048 bit RSA key.

www.learnvest.com receives an B on the Qualys SSL Test run on February 11, 2014. They do not support TLS v1.2, but they allow SSL v3.0 and prioritize RC4 cipher suites.

Security Claims

  • Safe & Secure
    • “128-bit secure socket layer technology (SSL) and SHA-256 encryption”
    • “secured by VeriSign, scanned daily by McAfee SECURE”
    • “LearnVest’s data is guarded 24/7”
    • “We use biometric checkpoints, multiple keylock entry and constant video surveillance.”
    • “Your money can’t go anywhere.”
    • “LearnVest will never sell your username, password or any identifiable information about you to anyone.”
    • “LearnVest’s privacy policy has been vetted and approved by TRUSTe”
  • Security & Legal
    • None.

Analysis of claims

LearnVest’s security claims are pretty good. Their site physical security sounds great. The SSL/TLS claims sound good as does being VeriSign secured and scanned by McAfee. While secondary to security, their privacy policy sounds good and is vetted by TRUSTe. LearnVest also mentions that its user interface does now allow users to transfer money.

The three things that LearnVest does not discuss are protection of bank passwords, an Intrusion Detection System (IDS), and scanning/analysis for Site exploits (e.g. SQL injection).


With the very limited security claims, I was still able to identify

  1. “SHA-256 encryption” – None of the cipher suites supported by LearnVest include SHA-256 and some enabled cipher suites use MD5.


Without protecting bank passwords, using an IDS, or testing for security vulnerabilities; I can only give LearnVest a C for their security policy.

United’s Insecure Login Page

One of United Airlines login pages potentially sends login credentials in plaintext. www.united.com/web/en-US/apps/account/account.aspx (login page accessed by clicking “Sign In” in the upper right of the homepage)can be accessed over HTTP or HTTPS and the login form sends (POST) its contents to signin.aspx over whichever type of connection account.aspx was served from.

For a long time I didn’t think realize this was a problem, because even when www.united.com/web/en-US/Default.aspx is served over HTTP, it submits usernames and passwords over HTTPS.

It appears all United Airlines pages support HTTPS, so I recommend starting your use of United.com by browsing to https://www.united.com/.