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Port Knocking

I’m a nerd so I tend to read what other nerds think about nerdish stuff. Slashdot, or /. as we like to call it, regularly feeds me with good news and articles. But tonight I came across an article on /. with a dead simple, still ingenious idea to raise security: Port Knocking:

The process of Port Knocking is a way to allow only people who know the “secret knock” access to a certain port on a system. For example, if I wanted to connect via SSH to a server, I could build a backdoor on the server that does not directly listen on port 22 (or any port for that matter) until it detects connection attempts to closed ports 1026,1027,1029,1034,1026,1044 and 1035 in that sequence within 5 seconds, then listens on port 22 for a connection within 10 seconds. The web site explains it in some detail, and there is even an experimental perl implementation of it that is available for download. I can’t think of any easy ways you could get around a system using this security method – let alone even know that a system is implementing it.

Pretty smart, huh? I guess this is a method I should’ve known, or at least thought of myself. You can read more about port knocking at www.portknocking.org (Slashdotted at the moment) or over at Linux Journal.

Today didn’t go exactly as planned. I woke up with a headache and a slight fever and decided to stay home from work. I’m back to normal now and will probably go to work tomorrow.

I also read the article Janet’s breast makes net history at BBC News and decided to check my own search logs to look if I’d had any Janet-searches directed to my site. And so I had:

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How to make the Internet go really slow, lesson I: Flash famous boob during the Super Bowl half time show.

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