The Impossible Password and default accounts. Oracle #LockDown #QuickTip #Infosec

Let’s revisit a customer who was about to go through an IG Audit. There is one finding that always seems to come up. Default accounts with default passwords. I don’t care if the accounts are expired and locked, if the user still has the default password set, then it’s a finding. Now you can go through all the default accounts and change the password if you want. I’m personally fond of having a script that does the work for me.

This is the script I use to go through and change all the default passwords. Now, once I’m done with this, I go back on set any necessary default accounts such as DBSNMP to a known password. Why, I find it easier to lock all the doors then methodically move through and unlock only the doors that are necessary.

First we are going to need a function that returns an impossible password. Well, in all honesty, it’s not impossible to crack, (that is because given enough horsepower any password can be eventually cracked.) This function will do one thing, return a 30 character randomly generated password of any printable character. There are a couple characters you can’t put in a password, so when we encounter those, we are going to replace them with an integer between 0 – 9.

Next we are going to go through all the default accounts and change the password.


    -- get the list of users with default passwords.
    CURSOR users_with_defpwd_cur IS
        SELECT username
        FROM sys.dba_users_with_defpwd;
    stmt     VARCHAR2(2000);    -- the base sql statement
    passwd   VARCHAR2(32);      -- the impossible_password.

    FUNCTION impossible_password RETURN VARCHAR2 AS
    -- will create a 30 character password wrapped in double quotes.
    passwd           VARCHAR2(32);        -- this is the password we are returning.
                                          -- we need 32 characters because we are
                                          -- wrapping the password in double quotes.
    p_invalid_char_3 VARCHAR2(1) := '"';  -- invalid password character 3 is '"'
    p_invalid_char_4 VARCHAR2(1) := ';';  -- invalid password character 4 is ';'
        passwd := SYS.dbms_random.STRING('p',30); -- get 30 printable characters. 
        -- find all the invalid characters and replace them with a random integer
        -- between 0 and 9.
        passwd := REPLACE(passwd, p_invalid_char_3, ceil(SYS.dbms_random.VALUE(-1,9)));
        passwd := REPLACE(passwd, p_invalid_char_4, ceil(SYS.dbms_random.VALUE(-1,9)));
        -- before we pass back the password, we need to put a double quote 
        -- on either side of it. This is because sometime we are going to 
        -- get a strange character that will cause oracle to cough up a hairball.
        passwd := '"' || passwd || '"';
        RETURN passwd;
-- main procedure.
    FOR users_with_defpwd_rec IN users_with_defpwd_cur LOOP
        passwd := impossible_password;
        stmt := 'alter user ' || users_with_defpwd_rec.username || ' identified by ' || passwd;

Code Based Access Control, #securecoding #oracle #plsql #MultipleSchemas

You can download the full code from CBAC Simple 

This example depends on the HR Demo schema being loaded. We will be building on this example over the next several months to present a full blown application that includes many of the secure coding features I have been talking about.

We need to do better. I keep walking into customers, where I keep hearing: “It’s harder to do.” “We have deadlines to make.” “We will address that sql injection flaw after we go production; because we are behind schedule.” Now guys, I get it! I have been down in the trenches for about thirty years coding, designing, and administering some sensitive information systems. (They are all sensitive in my view.) We really need to get on top of this, now.

First lets go back and see where we started this discussion. In part 1 and part 2, I introduced you to the better Architecture of using multiple schemas then we discussed definers rights and invokers rights.

Secure Coding Part 1

Secure Coding Part 2

Lets start: the first part of the code we are going to be doing some clean up. This way we can run the code again and again without getting error messages.

1 -- clean up before we start. 2 declare 3 procedure Drop_User(pUser in varchar2) is 4 User_Doesnt_Exist exception; 5 pragma Exception_Init(User_Doesnt_Exist, -01918); 6 begin 7 execute immediate 'drop user '||pUser||' cascade'; 8 exception when User_Doesnt_Exist then null; 9 end Drop_User; 10 begin 11 Drop_User('hr_api'); 12 Drop_User('usr1'); 13 end; 14 / 15 16 declare 17 Role_Doesnt_Exist exception; 18 pragma exception_init(Role_Doesnt_Exist, -01919); 19 begin 20 execute immediate 'drop role hr_emp_select_role'; 21 execute immediate 'drop role hr_backup_role'; 22 execute immediate 'drop role api_admin_role'; 23 exception when Role_Doesnt_Exist then null; 24 end; 25 -- done cleaning up. 26 27

Now lets get the two schemas we will be using in this example.

Line 3: we are creating a HR_API schema that will hold all the code to access data objects in the HR schema.

Line 5: we are creating the USR1 user that will make calls to code in the HR_API schema. (In a future post, I’ll be adding in HR_CODE schema that will hold the business logic. But for now, we are keeping it simple to demo CBAC.

1 -- this is going to be my api schema that will 2 -- have access to the hr objects. 3 create user hr_api identified by x; 4 -- this will be my executing user. 5 create user usr1 identified by x; 6

Now lets get to the roles we are going to need.

Line 3 we are creating the role HR_EMP_SELECT_ROLE. This role will have select on hr.employees. We will be granting this role to the api package that accesses the hr.employees table.

Line 6 we are creating the HR_BACKUP_ROLE. This role will be granted create any table, and then the role will be granted to the api package that does the backup. I really don’t like granting create any table, but for this purpose it is required to create a table in a different schema.

Line 8 is the API_ADMIN_ROLE. This role will have the create procedure privilege and will be assigned to the HR_API schema.

1 -- the hr_emp_select_role will have select in hr.ermployees. 2 create role hr_emp_select_role; 3 -- the hr_backup_role has create any table privilege. I really don't 4 -- like that, but that is what the role needs to create a table in 5 -- a diffrent schema. 6 create role hr_backup_role; 7 -- the api_admin_role has create procedure privilege. 8 create role api_admin_role; 9

.Now lets get into the grants we will need.

Lines 4 – 6 we are granting create session to usr1. At this time, this is the only privilege this user will need. Once we have the API package compiled, we will grant execute on that package to usr1

Lines 10 – 12 we are granting create procedure to the API_ADMIN_ROLE. This will be needed for HR_API to create a package in it’s schema.

Lines 16 – 18 we are granting select on hr.employees to the HR_EMP_SELECT_ROLE. This role will be granted to the HR_API schema with delegate option. I’ll discuss more about that later.

Lines 20 – 21 we are granting select on hr.employees to the HR_API schema. I really don’t like this, but it’s needed in order to compile the package.

Lines 26 – 28 we are granting create session to the HR_API schema. This will be needed to so HR_API can connect and create the required objects with only the permissions needed.

Line 32 we are granting create any table to the HR_BACKUP_ROLE. I really don’t like granting create any. This role will be granted to the API package that does some dynamic sql. I really need to think about tightening this down a bit. But for this iteration, we are going to use this to create a backup table in the hr schema.

Lines 36 – 39 here we are granting the HR_EMP_SELECT_ROLE and HR_BACKUP_ROLE to the HR_API schema with delegate option. This is important, you need to use either the DELEGATE OPTION or the ADMIN OPTION in order to be able to grant the roles to the HR_API packages.

Lines 41 – 43 and finally on our grants, we are granting the API_ADMIN_ROLE to the HR_API schema so HR_API can create the required packages.

1 -- the user usr1 will only need create session. after we've created 2 -- the package in the hr_api schema, we will grant execute on the 3 -- package to usr1. 4 grant 5 create session 6 to usr1; 7 -- 8 -- the api_admin_role will need the create procedure privilege. 9 -- this will be granted to hr_api. 10 grant 11 create procedure 12 to api_admin_role; 13 -- 14 -- this will give the hr_emp_select role the privilege 15 -- it needs to execute. 16 grant 17 select on hr.employees 18 to hr_emp_select_role; 19 -- 20 -- this will be needed to compile the code in the api schema. 21 grant 22 select 23 on hr.employees to hr_api; 24 -- 25 -- we are going to revoke create session after we are done. 26 grant 27 create session 28 to hr_api; 29 -- 30 -- the hr_bacup_role is used to demenstrate 31 -- using dynamic sql. 32 grant create any table to hr_backup_role; 33 -- 34 -- hr_api needs the roles with delegate option (or admin option) 35 -- to be able to grant the role to a package. 36 grant 37 hr_emp_select_role, 38 hr_backup_role 39 to hr_api with delegate option; 40 -- 41 grant 42 api_admin_role 43 to hr_api; 44 -- 45

The final step to setup our users and roles is to alter the user HR_API so there are no default roles. This is going to be done, because in the next installment we will be looking at creating password protected roles.

1 -- during normal operating, the hr_api schema does not 2 -- need any privileges. 3 alter user hr_api 4 default role none; 5

Now lets get into building our HR_API schema. It starts simple enough,

Line 1 connect to hr_api

Line 4 We set the roles we will need to create the api package, and the roles that will be granted to the api package.

1 -- connect as hr_api 2 conn hr_api/x@orcl 3 4 SET role hr_emp_select_role, api_admin_role, hr_backup_role; 5

Lines 1 – 8 we are creating a simple package that does two things. One get the phone number of a person based on first and last name. The second package is used to make a backup of the hr.employees table.

Line 12 Now that we have the package specification, we can grant the role HR_EMP_SELECT_ROLE and HR_BACKUP_ROLE to the hr_api.pgk_emp_select package.

1 create or replace package hr_api.pkg_emp_select 2 authid current_user AS 3 PROCEDURE pGetPhone(pFname IN VARCHAR2, 4 pLname IN VARCHAR2, 5 pPhone OUT VARCHAR2); 6 PROCEDURE pBackupEmp; 7 END; 8 / 9 10 -- we are going to grant the hr_emp_select_role 11 -- to pkg_emp_select 12 GRANT hr_emp_select_role, hr_backup_role to package pkg_emp_select; 13

Lines 3 – 24 don’t do anything very interesting, this procedure will get a phone number based on first and last name. My exception handler is really quite simple and does not do much. We’ll address that in a later post, because as you know, returning errors to the user is not the best practice from a infosec point of view.

Lines 30 – 39 is using dynamic sql to create a backup of the hr.employees table. We granted HR_BACKUP_ROLE to the package, this way, the package can create a table in the hr schema. I’m going to have to rethink this example, I don’t like it all that much because granting CREATE ANY TABLE is not really a good practice.

1 CREATE OR REPLACE PACKAGE BODY hr_api.pkg_emp_select AS 2 3 PROCEDURE pGetPhone(pFname IN VARCHAR2, 4 pLname IN VARCHAR2, 5 pPhone OUT VARCHAR2) IS 6 x INTEGER; 7 BEGIN 8 BEGIN 9 SELECT phone_number 10 INTO pPhone 11 FROM hr.employees 12 WHERE first_name = pFname 13 AND last_name = pLname; 14 EXCEPTION WHEN no_data_found then 15 pPhone := 'xxx'; 16 WHEN too_many_rows THEN 17 pPhone := 'yyy'; 18 WHEN others THEN 19 -- we can add in the help desk error handler later, again this 20 -- is just to demo granting roles to packages. 21 sys.dbms_output.put_line('pGetPhone raised an exception ' || sqlerrm); 22 END; 23 -- 24 END pGetPhone; 25 -- 26 -- this is a very simple procedure, create a backup table using execute 27 -- immediate. (dynamic sql) the only way this procedure is going to work 28 -- is if the package has create any table privilege to be able to 29 -- create a table in another schema. 30 PROCEDURE pBackupEmp IS 31 -- This is the date string 20170805 32 dt VARCHAR2(8); 33 BEGIN 34 dt := to_char(sysdate,'rrrrmmdd'); 35 execute immediate 'create table hr.employees' ||dt|| ' as select * from hr.employees'; 36 sys.dbms_output.put_line('create table success'); 37 exception when others then 38 sys.dbms_output.put_line('create table error ' || sqlerrm); 39 END pBackupEmp; 40 end pkg_emp_select; 41 / 42

Now that we have all that, lets’ test it.

1 conn usr1/x@orcl 2 set serveroutput on 3 declare 4 -- to hold the phone number, because we can't reference 5 -- hr.employees we can not use phone_number%type. 6 lPhone VARCHAR2(20); 7 begin 8 sys.dbms_output.put_line('testing cbac select on emp'); 9 hr_api.pkg_emp_select.pGetPhone(pFname => 'Jose Manuel', 10 pLname => 'Urman', 11 pPhone => lPhone); 12 sys.dbms_output.put_line(lPhone); 13 end; 14 / 15 16 -- if you run this twice on the same day you are going to get 17 -- a ORA-00955 error. this is because the package creates 18 -- a backup of the hr.employees table by appending the date 19 -- to the table name. So, if you are going to run it twice 20 -- you need to drop or rename the backup table. 21 begin 22 sys.dbms_output.put_line('testing dynamic sql'); 23 hr_api.pkg_emp_select.pBackupEmp; 24 sys.dbms_output.put_line('done'); 25 exception when others then 26 sys.dbms_output.put_line('daaaa ' || sqlerrm); 27 end; 28 / 29

#GDPR – RIGHT TO ACCESS. Security is a feature #3 Right to Access Part 1 of 2

The GDPR Right to access can get a bit complicated as it covers a few things that provide some challenges for us.

What is the purpose of the processing? Lets face it, we process data on people for a number of reasons.

First we are going to use the example of an online storefront. When a person places an order, a number of things happen with that person’s data. 1) Is there payment information accurate? 2) Do they have a store credit? 3) Does that person get a discount? 4) The parts that were ordered need to be shipped. 5) Store a history of the persons order, so the next time they want to order something, the system can make recommendations based on past orders.

If the shipping is being done by a third party such as Fedex or UPS, the person’s data is going to be transmitted to the shipping company. So now a person’s data is being held at both the online vendor and the shipping company.

What is the category of the data being processed? For the online storefront, we have payment, order and shipping information. For the shipping company, there is shipping and value information.

The recipients or categories of recipient to whom the personal data have been or will be disclosed, in particular recipients in third countries or international organisations. So in this case, let’s say that the package was shipped by FEDEX and let’s assume FEDEX data processing is done in the United States. (NOTE: this is an assumption, not a statement of fact.) Anyway the person’s shipping information has now left the EU for the United States of America. From the perspective of the online store vendor, the shipper will need to address Article 44 of the GDPR. I’ll get to Article 44 later.

Where possible, the envisaged period for which the personal data will be stored, or, if not possible, the criteria used to determine that period. So, how long will the data be stored? Certain types need to be kept for a defined period of time. ie. Financial information may need to kept for five or seven years that is defined by either applicable law or regulation. Other types of information may be kept for very short periods of time. I once worked on a system where the data was only resident for thirty days. This system packaged up the data and sent it to downstream system for further processing. Once the data was sent downstream, it was no longer needed. But, once the data was sent downstream, we would need to track what downstream systems received the personal data.

The existence of the right to request from the controller rectification or erasure of personal data or restriction of processing of personal data concerning the data subject or to object to such processing. You should be seeing a pattern here. It is going to be critical that we identify all PII (Personally Identifiable Information) in our systems. If a person identifies information we hold that is inaccurate, there needs to be a process in place to correct the information. If a person wants their information removed from our system, there needs a process in place to remove the information without corrupting or compromising the integrity of the system. Reference the Right to be forgotten and Article 17 of GDPR.

The right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority. We need to get into the definition of “Supervisory Authority.” I’ll address that in a later post. What kind of complaints can we expect? And what is the process to resolve those complaints? We need to spend time developing the process to address data complaints.

Where the personal data are not collected from the data subject, any available information as to their source. We feed downstream systems, and to be honest, there are a number of companies that sell our personal data. Say your company purchases mailing and phone list from a series of companies, you are now going to need to track the source of that data, so when the question arises, and it will; you can answer the question. What was the source of the data?

More to come.

@Oracle Cool new features to improve security. Part 1 Enhanced Whitelists PL/SQL

In Oracle 12.1 the ACCESSIBLE BY clause was introduced to the PL/SQL language. This gives the developer the ability mark a package, procedure, function, or type with what was allowed to call it. 12.2 gives us fine grained control over what can the specific functions and procedures in a package.

Here is what 12.1 gave us. As you can see in this example the package getEmpInfo and EmpMaint can both call the package emp_api. I love it, now we have a way to limit what can call a piece of code. But wait, in 12.2 it gets even better, look at example for 12.2

1 CREATE OR REPLACE PACKAGE emp_api 2 ACCESSIBLE BY (getEmpInfo, EmpMaint) 3 AUTHID CURRENT_USER AS 4 FUNCTION fGetEmpPhone( pFname IN VARCHAR2, 5 pLname IN VARCHAR2) 6 RETURN VARCHAR2; 7 8 FUNCTION fGetEmpManager(pEmployeeId IN NUMBER) RETURN NUMBER; 9 10 FUNCTION fInsEmp(pFirstName IN VARCHAR2, 11 pLastName IN VARCHAR2, 12 pEmail IN VARCHAR2, 13 pPhoneNumber IN VARCHAR2, 14 pHireDate IN DATE, 15 pJobId IN NUMBER, 16 pSalary IN NUMBER, 17 pCommissionPct IN NUMBER, 18 pManagerId IN NUMBER, 19 pDempartmentId IN NUMBER) 20 RETURN BOOLEAN; 21 22 FUNCTION fDelEmp(pEmployeeId IN NUMBER) 23 RETURN BOOLEAN; 24 25 FUNCTION fUpdateEmp(pEmployeeId IN NUMBER, 26 pFirstName IN VARCHAR2, 27 pLastName IN VARCHAR2, 28 pEmail IN VARCHAR2, 29 pPhoneNumber IN VARCHAR2, 30 pHireDate IN DATE, 31 pJobId IN NUMBER, 32 pSalary IN NUMBER, 33 pCommissionPct IN NUMBER, 34 pManagerId IN NUMBER, 35 pDempartmentId IN NUMBER) 36 RETURN BOOLEAN; 37 38 END;

In 12.2 we now have fine grained control over what can call the individual functions and procedures in our package. In the emp_api package the package getEmpInfo can call the functions fGetEmpPhone and fGetEmpManager. The package EmpMaint can call the functions, fDelEmp, fInsEmp, and fUpdateEmp. Now we have fine grained control over what can call the functions and procedures in a specific package.

1 create or replace PACKAGE emp_api 2 AUTHID CURRENT_USER 3 AS 4 FUNCTION fGetEmpPhone(pFname IN VARCHAR2, 5 pLname IN VARCHAR2) 6 RETURN VARCHAR2 ACCESSIBLE BY (PACKAGE getEmpInfo); 7 8 FUNCTION fGetEmpManager(pEmployeeId IN NUMBER) 9 RETURN NUMBER ACCESSIBLE BY (PACKAGE getEmpInfo); 10 11 FUNCTION fInsEmp(pFirstName IN VARCHAR2, 12 pLastName IN VARCHAR2, 13 pEmail IN VARCHAR2, 14 pPhoneNumber IN VARCHAR2, 15 pHireDate IN DATE, 16 pJobId IN NUMBER, 17 pSalary IN NUMBER, 18 pCommissionPct IN NUMBER, 19 pManagerId IN NUMBER, 20 pDempartmentId IN NUMBER) 21 RETURN BOOLEAN ACCESSIBLE BY (PACKAGE EmpMaint); 22 23 FUNCTION fDelEmp(pEmployeeId IN NUMBER) 24 RETURN BOOLEAN ACCESSIBLE BY (PACKAGE EmpMaint); 25 26 FUNCTION fUpdateEmp(pEmployeeId IN NUMBER, 27 pFirstName IN VARCHAR2, 28 pLastName IN VARCHAR2, 29 pEmail IN VARCHAR2, 30 pPhoneNumber IN VARCHAR2, 31 pHireDate IN DATE, 32 pJobId IN NUMBER, 33 pSalary IN NUMBER, 34 pCommissionPct IN NUMBER, 35 pManagerId IN NUMBER, 36 pDempartmentId IN NUMBER) 37 RETURN BOOLEAN ACCESSIBLE BY (PACKAGE EmpMaint); 38 39 END;


PL/SQL Security Coding Practices. Introduction to a better architecture part 1.

I have been seeing this database architecture for over thirty years and it’s high time we stopped using it. Before I go too far, let me tell you I get it, you have pressure to get the application out the door and working in a defined timeframe. I still design and develop systems and the pressure to take shortcuts can be great. This short cut is a security killer.

So what have we been doing wrong for all these decades? Put all of the database objects and application code into once schema. This is just a bad idea all around. All it takes is one security bug and the bad guy owns your database. You might as well, put pretty gold wrapping paper with a bow around it and write the bad guy a gift card. If you come to any of my talks, I’ll be happy to demonstrate owning a database, including all your source code and all your data in just a couple of easy commands. But because this is not intended on being a lesson in hacking a database, I wont go into it here.

The power and security configuration of using an API (1)

There is an architecture, that will drastically improve the security of your database. By segmenting your application code from your data and use an API to access the data. Oracle 12c has several PL/SQL enhancements that will make your code much more secure. Oracle 12c PL/SQL now allows you to assign roles to packages, procedures and functions (But you should only be using packages). PL/SQL also now allows you to white list what can execute code. For years, we granted execute to a user, but now you can define what PL/SQL package can call another PL/SQL package using the accessible by clause. We are going to leverage these new features along with authid to define a trusted path that is controllable, fast and secure.

My next several post will move through this architecture, and explaining how to implement it effectively.

The power and security configuration of using an API

2017 European Security Tour, #Moscow, #London, #Paris, #Helisnki

My 2017 speaking schedule is starting out with a bang.

My first stop will be in Moscow Russia where I am trying to arrange a short speaking engagement in conjunction with the Russia Oracle Users Group. Hopefully we can arrange something. I’ll be there on Tuesday January 24th and departing on Wednesday January 25th. If we can’t get a speaking engagement put together, feel free to drop me an email and we can meet for dinner / drinks the evening of the 24th. Please put “European Security Tour Moscow” on the subject line so your email does not get buried under the other 500+ emails I get every day.

On Wednesday evening January 25th, I will be in London to meetup with the folks at UKOUG. If you like to join us that evening, contact Martin Widlake his twitter handle is @MDWidlake. We will be drinking beer and discussing many aspects of Oracle, including how to integrate beer into your Oracle Presentation, Martin is an expert on that.

On Thursday January 26th, I will be in Paris for the French Oracle Users Group meetup. I will be presenting a combination of Holistic Database Security and Secure PL/SQL coding practices. Once I have a URL and details on time / location I will update the post.

From Paris, I will be off to Helsinki Finland to present Holistic Database Security on 30 January with Technopolis and Oracle Users Group Finland. This is a free event. The url is

From Helsinki I’m heading north to Rovaniemi and doing a private event for Finland National Bureau of Investigation. Then it’s back south to Helsinki for another engagement for a database security conference on February 2nd. I do not have the URL for the database security conference yet. As soon as I have it, I will update this post.

Now if that were not enough, once I get back to Baltimore, I will have about enough time to do a load of laundry then will be heading to Denver for RMOUG where I will be presenting Holistic Database Security and PL/SQL Secure Coding Practices.

#ORACLE PL/SQL Secure Coding Practices #INFOSEC – Please tell me how your database system is designed @bgoug will get this presentation first

The more you tell me, the more ways I can find I can find to attack your system. All I need is one little sql injection bug and trust me, it is most likely there, you just don’t know it yet.

execute process_row(’EMPLOYEES where 1=2 union select owner, name, text from all_source order by owner, name, line –’);

Problem #1 for you, Opportunity #1 for bad guys. Guess what, all of your source code just leaked out from your database.

Problem #2 for you, Opportunity #2 for bad guys. Not putting your your code into packages. If you put your pl/sql into a procedure or a function, I can extract your code from all_source, learn about your system and tailor my attack.

What do you need to do? Put your code into packages. If the code is in a package, the only thing I can get is the package specification.

Problem #2 for you, Opportunity #2 for bad guys. Comments in your package specification. Hey, I’ve been <humor> smacking junior developers with a boat paddle </humor> for years about not commenting their code. The good part is they eventually get it and put in comments. The bad part is comments are being put into the package specification. Some comments are quite verbose and <humor> I really like that</humor>. You are telling the bad guys everything they need to know to exploit your system.

What you need to do? Move all of your comments to the top of the package body and use inline comments in the package body. Again, when I extract your source code, if it’s in a package then I can only get the package specification.

Here is a sample of one of my packages specifications. You are not going to derive too much information from this except maybe what calls it.


AUTHID current_user 



-- constant declarations

sVersion CONSTANT VARCHAR2(10) := '20161026.1';




When I put on my penetration testing hat, all of your source code and comments make my job much easier. I learn exactly how your system is designed and coded and that lets me find all kinds of ways to exploit your system. <humor>Please don’t make my pen testing work too easy, customers will start thinking they are paying me too much money.</humor> And please for goodness sake, make the bad guys life harder; because if you do, they will likely move on to an easier target.

Turn off the #http #listener in #Oracle #STIG

Locking down a database (applying STIGs) you need to check to see if the listener is running http. If you don’t need the http service, turn it off. Turning off http will reduce the attack surface.

Step 1) Is http running?
[oracle@vbgeneric db_1]$ lsnrctl stat | grep HTTP
[oracle@vbgeneric db_1]$

Step 2) Turn off http
RLOCKARD@orcl> select version from v$instance;

RLOCKARD@orcl12c> sho parameter dispatchers

———————————— ———– ——————————
dispatchers string (PROTOCOL=TCP)
max_dispatchers integer

RLOCKARD@orcl12c> exec dbms_xdb.sethttpport(0);
PL/SQL procedure successfully completed.

RLOCKARD@orcl12c> exit
Disconnected from Oracle Database 12c Enterprise Edition Release – 64bit Production
With the Partitioning, OLAP, Advanced Analytics and Real Application Testing options

SYS@orcl12c> sho parameter dispatchers

———————————— ———– ——————————
dispatchers string (PROTOCOL=TCP)
max_dispatchers integer

[oracle@vbgeneric db_1]$ lsnrctl stop

LSNRCTL for Linux: Version – Production on 15-SEP-2016 09:25:29

Copyright (c) 1991, 2014, Oracle. All rights reserved.

The command completed successfully
[oracle@vbgeneric db_1]$ lsnrctl start

LSNRCTL for Linux: Version – Production on 15-SEP-2016 09:25:34

Copyright (c) 1991, 2014, Oracle. All rights reserved.

Starting /u01/app/oracle/product/ please wait…

TNSLSNR for Linux: Version – Production
System parameter file is /u01/app/oracle/product/
Log messages written to /u01/app/oracle/diag/tnslsnr/vbgeneric/listener/alert/log.xml
Notice it’s gone
Version TNSLSNR for Linux: Version – Production
Start Date 15-SEP-2016 09:25:34
Uptime 0 days 0 hr. 0 min. 0 sec
Trace Level off
Security ON: Local OS Authentication
Default Service orcl12c
Listener Parameter File /u01/app/oracle/product/
Listener Log File /u01/app/oracle/diag/tnslsnr/vbgeneric/listener/alert/log.xml
Listening Endpoints Summary…
Services Summary…
Service “orcl12c” has 1 instance(s).
Instance “orcl12c”, status UNKNOWN, has 1 handler(s) for this service…
The command completed successfully

That was easy.

You can use #sqlcl with #mkstore

I was struggling last week getting mkstore and sqlcl to work together. sqlcl is Oracle’s new command line interface. For more on sqlcl see I have been using sqlcl almost exclusively for the past year and love it. I also have a lot of my connections in keystore to handle cron jobs along with a few other use cases.

To get sqlcl and keystore to work together is quite easy.

  • Add the wallet location and sqlnet.wallet_override=true to sqlnet.ora
    • WALLET_LOCATION = (SOURCE = (METHOD = FILE) (METHOD_DATA = (DIRECTORY =/u01/app/oracle/wallet)))


  • Create a keystore
    • mkstore -wrl $ORACLE_BASE/wallet –create
    • enter the password and verify.
  • add the username/password@service to keystore
    • mkstore -wrl $ORACLE_BASE/wallet -createCredential localhost:1521/orcl rlockard mySecretPassword
    • enter the wallet password

Then connect

  • sql /@localhost:1521/orcl



Four things a developer can do now to improve their applications #infosec posture.

Lets face it, we have deadlines to meet and millions of lines of code in production. I get it, I’ve been a working PL/SQL developer off and on for over 20 years. If we get into the habit of using some of the security features in the language along with some practices, we can improve the security of you code. So, lets get into it.

1) Use packages. Steve Feuerstein has been saying for years to move those functions and procedures to packages and there is good security reasons to do that. If you have a SQL Injection bug in your application, I can get to ALL_SOURCE and read your code and if I can get to your code, I can find other exploits.

So we can read the code in Functions and Procedures.

1 SQL> select text from all_source where owner = user and name = 'PARSE_STRING'; 2 procedure parse_string(p_string varchar2) AS 3 CURSOR col_cur IS 4 select distinct (instr(p_string||',',',',1,level)) loc 5 FROM dual 6 CONNECT BY LEVEL <= LENGTH(REPLACE(p_string,','))+1 7 ORDER BY 1; 8 l_col varchar2(65); 9 BEGIN 10 for col_rec in col_cur 11 loop 12 l_col := substr(p_string, col_rec.loc, instr(p_string, col_rec.loc+1)); 13 dbms_output.put_line(l_col || 'col pos ' || col_rec.loc); 14 end loop; 15 end; 16 17 14 rows selected. 18 19 SQL> create user u2 identified by MY##56SecurePassword; 20 21 User created. 22 23 SQL> grant create session to u2; 24 25 Grant succeeded. 26 27 SQL> grant execute on parse_string to u2; 28 29 Grant succeeded. 30 31 SQL> conn u2@orcl 32 Enter password: 33 Connected. 34 SQL> select text from all_source where owner = 'RLOCKARD' 35 2 and name = 'PARSE_STRING'; 36 procedure parse_string(p_string varchar2) AS 37 CURSOR col_cur IS 38 select distinct (instr(p_string||',',',',1,level)) loc 39 FROM dual 40 CONNECT BY LEVEL <= LENGTH(REPLACE(p_string,','))+1 41 ORDER BY 1; 42 l_col varchar2(65); 43 BEGIN 44 for col_rec in col_cur 45 loop 46 l_col := substr(p_string, col_rec.loc, instr(p_string, col_rec.loc+1)); 47 dbms_output.put_line(l_col || 'col pos ' || col_rec.loc); 48 end loop; 49 end; 50 51 14 rows selected. 52 53 SQL> 54

Now when we put this into a package, the only thing I can extract from it is the package specification.

First lets put it into a package.

1 SQL> sho user 2 USER is "RLOCKARD" 3 SQL> create or replace package rlockard.utility AS 4 procedure parse_string(p_string varchar2); 5 end; 6 / 7 8 Package created. 9 10 SQL> create or replace package body rlockard.utility AS 11 12 procedure parse_string(p_string varchar2) IS 13 CURSOR col_cur IS 14 select distinct (instr(p_string||',',',',1,level)) loc 15 FROM dual 16 CONNECT BY LEVEL <= LENGTH(REPLACE(p_string,','))+1 17 ORDER BY 1; 18 l_col varchar2(65); 19 BEGIN 20 for col_rec in col_cur 21 loop 22 l_col := substr(p_string, col_rec.loc, instr(p_string, col_rec.loc+1)); 23 sys.dbms_output.put_line(l_col || 'col pos ' || col_rec.loc); 24 end loop; 25 end; 26 end; 27 / 28 29 Package body created. 30 31 SQL>

Now, lets test to see what we can see.

1 SQL> grant execute on utility to u2; 2 3 Grant succeeded. 4 5 SQL> conn u2@orcl 6 Enter password: 7 Connected. 8 SQL> select text from all_source where owner = 'RLOCKARD' 9 and name = 'UTILITY'; 10 2 11 TEXT 12 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 13 package utility AS 14 procedure parse_string(p_string varchar2); 15 end; 16

As we can see, now you only get the package specification. This is really more that I would like to get out, but it’s much better than getting all your source code.

2) Split up your packages into smaller packages based on function. I normally split them up by UTILITY, SENSITIVE and NON SENSITIVE. If there are functions / procedures against sensitive tables those will go into the sensitive packages. You can further break down you sensitive packages. ie: CUSTOMER_API_PKG that would be your interface into your customers table.

Here is a good post by Steve Feuerstein on breaking packages down and keeping them compatible with existing code.

3) Limit the execution rights to a package and what a user can do with a package.

3a) We have been granting execute to packages for decades now. Then Oracle 11g gave us Invoker and Definer rights. When you create a package and don’t specify invoker or definer rights, the package is created with definer rights as the default. That’s all well and good, but let’s think this through. If I execute a package with definer rights and that package updates the customers table, even thought I don’t have update on the customers table, the package will work.

1 SQL> create or replace package rlockard.cust_api AS 2 function update_customers_credit_limit(pID in number, pCredit in number) return number; 3 end; 4 / 5 Package created. 6 7 SQL> create or replace package body rlockard.cust_api AS 8 9 function update_customers_credit_limit(pID in number, pCredit in number) return number is 10 retVal number; 11 begin 12 update customers set credit = pCredit where id = pId; 13 return 1; 14 exception when no_data_found 15 then 16 retVal := helpdesk.utility.log_error(pPkg => $$PLSQL_UNIT, pLine => $$PLSQL_LINE, 17 pParm => 'pID = ' || to_char(iID) || 18 ' pAmount= ' || to_char(pCredit), 19 pErr => sqlcode); 20 return retVal * -1; -- we are flipping the sign to indacate it's an error to caller. 21 end; 22 end; 23 / 24 Package body created. 25 SQL> 26

I am going to grant execute to the user U2 that we create earlier and test this.

1 SQL> grant execute on rlockard.cust_api to u2; 2 3 Grant succeeded. 4 5 SQL> conn u2@orcl 6 Enter password: 7 Connected. 8 SQL> declare 9 2 x number; 10 3 begin 11 4 x:=rlockard.cust_api.update_customers_credit_limit(pId => 1770, pCredit => 1000000); 12 5 end; 13 6 / 14 15 PL/SQL procedure successfully completed. 16 17 SQL> select credit from rlockard.customers where id = 1770; 18 select credit from rlockard.customers where id = 1770 19 * 20 ERROR at line 1: 21 ORA-00942: table or view does not exist 22 23 24 SQL> conn rlockard@orcl 25 Enter password: 26 Connected. 27 SQL> select credit from rlockard.customers where id = 1770; 28 29 CREDIT 30 ---------- 31 1000000 32 33 SQL> 34

Did you expect that to happen?  How are we going to tighten this down. We are going to set the package to use invokers rights. By adding AUTHID CURRENT_USER to the package specification, the package executes with U2’s rights. U2 does not have any rights on the customers table, the package fails with ORA-00942: table or view does not exists.

1 SQL> create or replace package rlockard.cust_api 2 AUTHID CURRENT_USER 3 AS 4 function update_customers_credit_limit(pID in number, pCredit in number) return number; 5 end; 6 / 7 2 3 4 5 6 8 Package created. 9 10 11 SQL> conn u2@orcl 12 Enter password: 13 Connected. 14 SQL> declare 15 x number; 16 begin 17 x := rlockard.cust_api.update_customers_credit_limit(pId => 1770, pCredit => 2500000); 18 exception when others then 19 sys.dbms_output.put_line(sqlerrm); 20 end; 21 / 22 ORA-00942: table or view does not exist 23 24 SQL> conn rlockard@orcl 25 Enter password: 26 Connected. 27 SQL> select credit from customers where id = 1770; 28 29 CREDIT 30 ---------- 31 1000000 32 SQL> 33

3b) In Oracle 12c we were given the ability to grant roles to packages. (procedures and functions too, but you should be using packages) Now, when we have sensitive tables in another schema, we can create a role that a package needs and grant that role to a package.

1 CREATE ROLE update_customers; 2 3 grant update_customers to rlockard; 4 5 GRANT SELECT 6 ON customers 7 TO update_customers; 8 9 GRANT update_customers TO PACKAGE cust_api; 10 11 declare 12 x number; 13 begin 14 x := rlockard.cust_api.update_customers_credit_limit(pId => 1770, pCredit => 2500000); 15 exception when others then 16 sys.dbms_output.put_line(sqlerrm); 17 end; 18 /

3c) Oracle 12c also gave us the accessible by clause. This creates a white list of the packages that can call a package. This way you are narrowing down the ways a package can get called, creating a trusted path to your secure data. So here the public package can call the private package, but if anything else tries to call it a PLS-00904 error will be raised.


1 SQL> create or replace package public_package AS 2 procedure update_customers(pId in number, 3 pColumn in varchar2, 4 pValue in varchar2); 5 end; 6 / 7 8 Package created. 9 10 SQL> create or replace package body public_package as 11 procedure update_customers(pId in number, 12 pColumn in varchar2, 13 pValue in varchar2) IS 14 x number; -- we know it's a function that returs a number. 15 begin -- this is simplistic to demo accessable_by 16 if pColumn = 'CREDIT' then 17 x := rlockard.cust_api.update_customers_credit_limit(pId => pId, pCredit => pValue); 18 end if; 19 end; 20 end; 21 / 22 23 Package body created. 24 25 SQL> create or replace package rlockard.cust_api 26 accessible by (public_package) AS 27 function update_customers_credit_limit(pID in number, pCredit in number) return number; 28 end; 29 / 30 31 Package created. 32 33 SQL> 34 35 SQL> declare 36 x number; 37 begin 38 x := rlockard.cust_api.update_customers_credit_limit(pId => 1770, pCredit => 2500000); 39 exception when others then 40 sys.dbms_output.put_line(sqlerrm); 41 end; 42 / 43 x := rlockard.cust_api.update_customers_credit_limit(pId => 1770, pCredit => 2500000); 44 * 45 ERROR at line 4: 46 ORA-06550: line 4, column 8: 47 PLS-00904: insufficient privilege to access object CUST_API 48 ORA-06550: line 4, column 3: 49 PL/SQL: Statement ignored 50 51 52 SQL> begin 53 public_package.update_customers(pId => 1771, pColumn => 'CREDIT', pValue => '200'); 54 end; 55 / 56 57 PL/SQL procedure successfully completed. 58 59 SQL> 60

But when we call it from the package in the accessible by clause, then it works fine. Again, we are limiting the paths to get to the sensitive information.

4a) We are getting down to the meat of what every shop should be doing. Reviewing code. You should be looking for dynamic code that is concatenating variables together. This is a painfully bad piece of code with a major SQL Injection bug.

1 create or replace PROCEDURE UserLogin 2 (p_email DEFAULT NULL, 3 p_password logins.password%type DEFAULT NULL) 4 AS 5 6 STMT CONSTANT VARCHAR2(4000) := 7 'SELECT email 8 FROM logins 9 WHERE email = ''' || p_email || 10 ''' AND password = ''' || p_password || ''''; 11 12 l_result; 13 BEGIN 14 15 dbms_output.put_line ('SQL STMT: ' || STMT); 16 17 EXECUTE IMMEDIATE STMT INTO l_result; 18 19 dbms_output.put_line ('Logon succeeded.'); 20 21 EXCEPTION WHEN OTHERS THEN 22 null; -- OH NO HE DID NOT 23 END UserLogin;

How would I fix this. Well, lets’ change the dynamic SQL and put in some bind variables. We can still do a lot more with this code, but this fixes the SQL Injection bug and a couple other issues.

1 create or replace function UserLogin2 2 (p_email DEFAULT NULL, 3 p_password logins.PASSWORD%TYPE DEFAULT NULL) 4 RETURN NUMBER AS 5 kount number; -- a dumb variable to hold a count 6 BEGIN 7 8 SELECT count(*) 9 INTO kount 10 FROM logins 11 WHERE email = p_email 12 and password = p_password; 13 14 IF kount = 1 THEN 15 sys.dbms_output.put_line ('Logon succeeded.'); 16 RETURN kount; 17 ELSE 18 return -1; 19 end if; 20 21 END UserLogin2;

Now you will find I love code reviews. Frequently we learn a way to do something and because it works, we continue doing it. Heck, I loved cursor for loops until I learned better in a code review. Code reviews should be approached as learning opportunities. You are going to learn a lot more tricks reading other peoples code and you may catch something that will improve the security of your system.

So in review the steps you can do now to improve the security posture of your applications are: Control the rights to executing code. Put everything in packages. Split up your packages. Do code reviews.