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Author Topic: DSN settings
Nam
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3472

posted 18 October 2005 05:37 PM      Profile for Nam     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
So, a person I don't really know who works for a small organization has been accused of changing his DSN settings on his computer. The organization uses a network server, and the IT person claims this guy had no good reason to change the DSN settings, changing them has allowed virius's to infiltrate his computer, and allowed downloads of stuff that shuldn't have been downloaded.

What would be a legitimate reason for anyone to change DSN settings? Could changing the settings allow these nasty things to happen? The guy claims he didn't know he was changing the DSN settings - is this possible? I'm curious because this guy may be fired for this.


From: Calgary-Land of corporate towers | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
jrootham
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 838

posted 18 October 2005 05:42 PM      Profile for jrootham     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Clarification: Do you mean Domain Name Server (DNS) settings?
From: Toronto | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
HeywoodFloyd
token right-wing mascot
Babbler # 4226

posted 18 October 2005 05:47 PM      Profile for HeywoodFloyd     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I'd think it meant DNS too, rather than DSN (Data Source Name) which is where your ODBC DB connections reside.

Changing that wouldn't allow viruses to enter or proscribed network activities to occur.


From: Edmonton: This place sucks | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
Reality. Bites.
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 6718

posted 18 October 2005 05:51 PM      Profile for Reality. Bites.        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Sounds like the company is setting itself up for a nice wrongful dismissal suit.
From: Gone for good | Registered: Aug 2004  |  IP: Logged
Yukoner
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 5787

posted 18 October 2005 06:57 PM      Profile for Yukoner   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Exchange DSN with IP in the origional post and this makes a bit more sense, but barely.

Assuming he changed his (static) IP to a different one, this could affect firewall settings and things running (like SurfControl) that log and/or block access to certian sites by the end users IP.

It would be a leap to assume this guy picked an IP the had all firewall ports open and downloaded porn and virii.

If this is the case, the IT guy should be fired for having such a gaping hole in the network.


From: Um, The Yukon. | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
HeywoodFloyd
token right-wing mascot
Babbler # 4226

posted 18 October 2005 07:24 PM      Profile for HeywoodFloyd     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
There could be a case made that changing any system settings without the explicit permission of the IT dept is ground for firing. It is with a number of companies that I have worked with.
From: Edmonton: This place sucks | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
Reality. Bites.
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 6718

posted 18 October 2005 08:13 PM      Profile for Reality. Bites.        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Could be grounds for firing in company policy, but considering how easy it is for an inexperienced user to change things without realizing they are doing so, it could cost the company in a wrongful dismissal suit.
From: Gone for good | Registered: Aug 2004  |  IP: Logged
Nam
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3472

posted 18 October 2005 08:32 PM      Profile for Nam     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yes, I meant DNS. RB-I understand it may be easy to change the settings, but would a user have a reason to be in a place where the change could occur, accidently or otherwise?
From: Calgary-Land of corporate towers | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
HeywoodFloyd
token right-wing mascot
Babbler # 4226

posted 18 October 2005 08:32 PM      Profile for HeywoodFloyd     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
True enough. In the cases that I'm aware of, the systems are locked down tight enough that even power users can't tinker with settings.
From: Edmonton: This place sucks | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
radiorahim
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2777

posted 18 October 2005 11:59 PM      Profile for radiorahim     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
True enough. In the cases that I'm aware of, the systems are locked down tight enough that even power users can't tinker with settings.

Fundamental though is the fact that the "default" on Window$ is for all settings to be "open" so that anyone can do anything they want on a machine.

If you have a not particularly competent IT department that doesn't lock user machines down you can end up with this problem.

I recently did some offsite work at a company that supplied me with a desktop PC. While I couldn't logon to the company network, I was able to install any programme I wanted to. Now I didn't do anything harmful...just installed Firefox because I hate IE...but I could very well have loaded all kinds of crap onto the machine.


From: a Micro$oft-free computer | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
rbil
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 582

posted 19 October 2005 12:25 AM      Profile for rbil     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Nam:
Yes, I meant DNS. RB-I understand it may be easy to change the settings, but would a user have a reason to be in a place where the change could occur, accidently or otherwise?

I'm having a hard time trying to figure out what the guy's been accused of doing? If indeed he changed something on his workstation in regards to DNS, what could that have been? The only places in Windoze where DNS is referred to is pointing to DNS servers. To even get to change that, I believe one would have to be setting up the machine to use a static ip address rather than using DHCP.

So assuming the guy has gone and made some sort of changes to that network configuration on the computer he has access to, what does DNS have to do with it? Obviously if he points the settings to a DNS server that doesn't really exist, then he won't be able to have an Internet connection. But if he's changed to another valid DNS server than what was there previously, that doesn't in anyway jeopardize network security. In fact, what jeopardizes network security more than anything else is using that toy operating system from MickeyMouse.

I suggest that when your friend is able to outline in detail what he's been accused of doing and how his IT department thinks what he has done has jeopardized the security of the company's network, you can't expect to receive any reasoned responses here, nor defence for his actions.

Cheers.


From: IRC: irc.bcwireless.net JOIN: #linuxtalk | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Yukoner
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 5787

posted 19 October 2005 01:11 AM      Profile for Yukoner   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Just so we are all on the same page here.

A DNS service/server translates URL's like www.cnn.com to an IP address like 64.236.16.20 It is easy for humans to remember www.cnn.com although if you really wanted to browse by IP address go ahead a type the IP I just showed and it will take you directly to CNN. Imagine trying to remember all the IP addresses for the sites you frequent and you will soon understand the value of DNS. The intraweb and your computer couldn't give a rats ass about URL's or human friendly names like rabble.ca so when your browser request a visit to rabble.ca your machine calls the DNS and says "Hey, what is the IP (IP adresses are the only thing your machine understands) for rabble" the DNS fires back the IP and off you go.

Now, if your primary DNS is down, here is where your secondary DNS kicks in. Also, should rabble not resolve to an IP on your primary DNS, your secondary DNS may have an entry that allows for transalation.

There is now way in hell changing a DNS on a single machine will make a network, or even that machine vulnerable to attack by a hacker or virus.

Your friend is not telling you the whole story.


From: Um, The Yukon. | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
HeywoodFloyd
token right-wing mascot
Babbler # 4226

posted 19 October 2005 01:21 AM      Profile for HeywoodFloyd     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Lets give the friend the benefit of doubt and say that perhaps something got lost in the recounting of the events in question.
From: Edmonton: This place sucks | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
Yukoner
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 5787

posted 19 October 2005 01:25 AM      Profile for Yukoner   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
So we won't make mention of the massive pr0n cache on the guys machine then?


From: Um, The Yukon. | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
HeywoodFloyd
token right-wing mascot
Babbler # 4226

posted 19 October 2005 01:27 AM      Profile for HeywoodFloyd     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
That or the "backoffice" install that proved that they can't spell.
From: Edmonton: This place sucks | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
Gir Draxon
leftist-rightie and rightist-leftie
Babbler # 3804

posted 19 October 2005 01:30 AM      Profile for Gir Draxon     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by HeywoodFloyd:
True enough. In the cases that I'm aware of, the systems are locked down tight enough that even power users can't tinker with settings.

Yeah. If they really didn't want you messing with system settings, you wouldn't even be able to access the network properties to even look at the TCP/IP properties.

And changing the DNS settings shouldn't open up vast security holes in the network. I'm not sure how it could possibly be the case, but even if it is, then that sounds like a pretty flaky security system to me.


From: Arkham Asylum | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
Yukoner
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 5787

posted 19 October 2005 02:51 AM      Profile for Yukoner   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
DNS has nothing to do with security of a local machine or network.
From: Um, The Yukon. | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged

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