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Date: Wed, 16 Nov 2016 16:11:57 +0000
From: John Haxby <>
Subject: Re: CVE-2016-4484: - Cryptsetup Initrd root Shell

On 16/11/16 15:55, Jason Cooper wrote:
> How does this differ from an attacker setting 'init=/bin/sh' on the
> kernel command line?  Or, booting from attacker provided media?  Or, in
> OS X, booting in single user mode?
> Your Discussion section at the end mentions facilities (GRUB passwords,
> BIOS passwords, etc) for preventing this "Developer friendliness".  How
> do you envision the installer enabling these while providing a failsafe
> that an attacker can't exploit?

If you set a grub password then the attacker cannot set init=/bin/sh on
the kernel command line without knowing the grub password.   However,
when the boot process prompts you for the encrypted volume password you
can just hit enter until you eventually get a shell prompt.  Of course,
the attacker needs to be able to see the console where the password is
typed in ...


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