8 Matching Annotations
  1. Jun 2020
    1. Google’s novel response has been to compare each app to its peers, identifying those that seem to be asking for more than they should, and alerting developers when that’s the case. In its update today, Google says “we aim to help developers boost the trust of their users—we surface a message to developers when we think their app is asking for a permission that is likely unnecessary.”
  2. May 2020
    1. Website administrators then get access to their visitors’ risk scores and can decide how to handle them: For instance, if a user with a high risk score attempts to log in, the website can set rules to ask them to enter additional verification information through two-factor authentication. As Khormaee put it, the “worst case is we have a little inconvenience for legitimate users, but if there is an adversary, we prevent your account from being stolen.”
  3. Apr 2020
    1. Browser fingerprinting is quite a powerful method of tracking users around the Internet. There are some defensive measures that can be taken with existing browsers, but none of them are ideal. In practice, the most realistic protection is using the Tor Browser, which has put a lot of effort into reducing browser fingerprintability. For day-to-day use, the best options are to run tools like Privacy Badger or Disconnect that will block some (but unfortunately not all) of the domains that try to perform fingerprinting, and/or to use a tool like NoScript for Firefox, which greatly reduces the amount of data available to fingerprinters.
    1. Anti-automation on the form where a key can be requested is one thing, stopping someone from manually registering, say, 20 of them with different email addresses and massively amplifying their request rate is quite another.
    2. I got way too many emails from people about API requests being blocked to respond to. Often this was due to simply not meeting the API requirements, for example providing a descriptive UA string. Other times it was because they were on the same network as abusive users. There were also those who simply smashed through the rate limit too quickly and got themselves banned for a day. Other times, there were genuine API users in that West African country who found themselves unable to use the service. I was constantly balancing the desire to make the API easily accessible whilst simultaneously trying to ensure it wasn't taken advantage of.
    3. Combating Abuse with Firewall Rules
    4. Make more than 40 requests in a minute and you're in the naughty corner for a day. Only thing is, that's IP-based and per the earlier section on abusive patterns, actors with large numbers of IP addresses can largely circumvent this approach. It's still a fantastic turn-key solution that seriously raises the bar for anyone wanting to get around it, but someone determined enough will find a way.