From the Canyon Edge -- :-Dustin

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Multi-Factor Authentication in the Cloud

Here are the slides, as promised, from my Multi-Factor Authentication in the Cloud talk at yesterday's Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit.  I really enjoyed this talk, and the excellent questions from the audience!


Monday, April 8, 2013

The Horror

I had just finished an awesome lunch with my good friend Josh, at a restaurant his brother, Riley, manages in Dallas.  Enjoying the delicious smoked brisket sandwich, Riley walks up to us at the bar and asks if I drive a black Cadillac.  I knew that question couldn't mean good news of any kind -- just how bad would it be, as this has happened to me before.

Josh and I had driven from Austin to Dallas that morning, to attend the Big Texas Beer Festival, which was going on later that afternoon, and had dipped into this really upscale, beautiful barbecue restaurant, Smoke, at 11:45am.  It's in a bit of a rough neighborhood that is in the process of being cleaned up.  But looks like they're still in need of a bit more gentrification.

Josh and I each had an overnight bag packed, with a change of clothes.  I also had a small cooler with a growler of my own home brewed Scotch Ale.  Unfortunately, those three bags were in plain sight on the back seat and not in the trunk.  Within 30 minutes, between 11:45am and 12:15pm, in broad daylight, some lowlife reprobate delinquent hoodlum smashed the back window and swiped all three bags.  My Google Plus post, within 5 minutes of learning of the treachery, expressed my feelings at the time.

Besides the growler of home brew, I also lost a change of clothes (of course, my favorite t-shirt, jacket, and flip flops), and my Asus Transformer TF700T and mobile dock.

The latter is, unfortunately, an expensive toy, and the biggest loss here.  Unfortunately, all of this falls within my insurance's deductible, so it looks like I'm just paying the Shit Happens tax :-(

So the only silver lining of this whole experience that my Android tablet was, in fact, encrypted.  I used the stock device encryption option available in Android 4.0+, which, if I understand correctly, uses dm-crypt to encrypt the device.

I'm confident that I have a sufficiently long and complicated pass phrase that it won't be guessed or brute forced easily.  20+ numbers, capital and lower case letters, and special characters.  That has helped me sleep a bit more easily at night, knowing that all I have lost is the physical machinery itself.

While I do know how Ubuntu's Encrypted Home Directory works, inside and out, I will review Android's encryption implementation, so that I can get completely comfortable with it.

A big thanks to Riley, who called the cops (they filed a report), loaned us his computer and printer to print out our beer fest tickets, and a shop vac to clean up the mess of glass shards.