Self-Exfiltration: The Dangers of Browser-Enforced Information Flow Control

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Provided by: Carnegie Mellon University
Topic: Security
Format: PDF
Since the early days of Netscape, browser vendors and web security researchers have restricted out-going data based on its destination. The security argument accompanying these mechanisms is that they prevent sensitive user data from being sent to the attacker's domain. However, in this paper, the authors show that regulating web information flow based on its destination server is an inherently flawed security practice. It is vulnerable to self-exfiltration attacks, where an adversary stashes stolen information in the database of a whitelisted site, then later independently connects to the whitelisted site to retrieve the information.
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