Open Source Market Segment LS
Open Source Market Segment RS
Sunday, 05 April 2015 08:33

Linux Australia server hacked, personal information may have been stolen Featured


A public server belonging to Linux Australia, the umbrella group for Linux user groups in the country, was breached on March 22, and the personal information of members may have been stolen.

Detailing the breach in a post to the main mailing list, the organisation's president, Joshua Hesketh, wrote yesterday that the breach had been discovered during an investigation as to why a large number of error reporting emails had been generated by a server hosting the organisation's conference management system. known as Zookeepr.

Linux Australia hosts an annual national conference known as LinuxConf at various venues and also sponsors a number of smaller events catering to different open-source technologies.

The server which generated the error emails hosted the conference systems for the national conferences of 2013, 2014 and 2015, and for PyCon Australia 2013 and 2014, the latter two being conferences devoted to the Python programming language.

When the errors were investigated on March 24, it was discovered that between 4am and 6am on March 22, the server had been breached by an individual using what Hesketh described as "a currently unknown vulnerability to trigger a remote buffer overflow and gain root-level access to the server".

He wrote that a remote access tool was installed, and the server was rebooted to load this software into memory. "A botnet command and control was subsequently installed
and started. During the period the individual had access to the Zookeepr server, a number of Linux Australia's automated backup processes ran, which included the dumping of conference databases to disk."

While there was no indication that personal information had been lost, Hesketh said the organisation was operating with the worst case scenario in mind. The database dumps that occurred during the breach "include information provided during conference registration – first and last names, physical and email addresses, and any phone contact details provided, as well as a hashed version of the user password".

Hesketh said that as the organisation used a third party to handle credit card payments, there would be no banking or credit card details in the database dumps.

Asked whether the attacker had physical access to the server, Hesketh said: "There is no evidence of the attacker having physical access. As such, we believe it was a remote attack."

Read 6467 times

Please join our community here and become a VIP.

Subscribe to ITWIRE UPDATE Newsletter here
JOIN our iTWireTV our YouTube Community here


Hybrid cloud promises to bring together the best of both worlds enabling businesses to combine the scalability and cost-effectiveness of the cloud with the performance and control that you can get from your on-premise infrastructure.

Reducing WAN latency is one of the biggest issues with hybrid cloud performance. Taking advantage of compression and data deduplication can reduce your network latency.

Research firm, Markets and Markets, predicted that the hybrid cloud market size is expected to grow from US$38.27 billion in 2017 to US$97.64 billion by 2023.

Colocation facilities provide many of the benefits of having your servers in the cloud while still maintaining physical control of your systems.

Cloud adjacency provided by colocation facilities can enable you to leverage their low latency high bandwidth connections to the cloud as well as providing a solid connection back to your on-premises corporate network.

Download this white paper to find out what you need to know about enabling the hybrid cloud in your organisation.



It's all about Webinars.

Marketing budgets are now focused on Webinars combined with Lead Generation.

If you wish to promote a Webinar we recommend at least a 3 to 4 week campaign prior to your event.

The iTWire campaign will include extensive adverts on our News Site and prominent Newsletter promotion and Promotional News & Editorial. Plus a video interview of the key speaker on iTWire TV which will be used in Promotional Posts on the iTWire Home Page.

Now we are coming out of Lockdown iTWire will be focussed to assisting with your webinars and campaigns and assistance via part payments and extended terms, a Webinar Business Booster Pack and other supportive programs. We can also create your adverts and written content plus coordinate your video interview.

We look forward to discussing your campaign goals with you. Please click the button below.


Sam Varghese

Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

Share News tips for the iTWire Journalists? Your tip will be anonymous




Guest Opinion

Guest Reviews

Guest Research

Guest Research & Case Studies

Channel News