Difference between revisions of "HTTP Strict Transport Security"

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(HSTS enabled in Mavericks, it is free upgrade so do it.)
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<br>
 
<br>
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The specification has been released and published end of 2012 as RFC 6797 (HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS)) by the IETF. (Reference see in the links at the bottom.)
  
 
== Examples  ==
 
== Examples  ==
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   Strict-Transport-Security: max-age=60000
 
   Strict-Transport-Security: max-age=60000
  
If all subdomains are HTTPS to then the following header is applicable:
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If all subdomains are HTTPS too then the following header is applicable:
  
 
   Strict-Transport-Security: max-age=60000; includeSubDomains
 
   Strict-Transport-Security: max-age=60000; includeSubDomains
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|-
 
|-
 
| '''Browser'''<br>
 
| '''Browser'''<br>
| '''Lowest Version Supported'''<br>
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| '''Support Introduced'''<br>
 
|-
 
|-
 
| Internet Explorer <br>
 
| Internet Explorer <br>
| no support<br>
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| no support as of IE 10 (tested on 2013-01-01)<br>
 
|-
 
|-
 
| Firefox<br>
 
| Firefox<br>
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|-
 
|-
 
| Opera<br>
 
| Opera<br>
| ??<br>
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| 12<br>
 
|-
 
|-
 
| Safari<br>
 
| Safari<br>
| ??<br>
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| Mavericks (Mac OS X 10.9)<br>
 
|-
 
|-
 
| Chrome<br>
 
| Chrome<br>
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         Header set Strict-Transport-Security "max-age=16070400; includeSubDomains"
 
         Header set Strict-Transport-Security "max-age=16070400; includeSubDomains"
  
The following links show how to do set response headers in other web servers:
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The following links show how to set response headers in other web servers:
* [http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753133(WS.10).aspx IIS]
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* [http://wiki.nginx.org/HttpHeadersModule NGINX]
 
* [http://wiki.nginx.org/HttpHeadersModule NGINX]
 
* [http://redmine.lighttpd.net/wiki/lighttpd/Docs:ModSetEnv#Options Lighttpd]
 
* [http://redmine.lighttpd.net/wiki/lighttpd/Docs:ModSetEnv#Options Lighttpd]
 
* [http://httpd.apache.org/docs/2.2/mod/mod_headers.html HTTPd]
 
* [http://httpd.apache.org/docs/2.2/mod/mod_headers.html HTTPd]
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==== IIS ====
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Whilst [http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753133(WS.10).aspx custom headers] can be configured in IIS without any extensions, it is not possible to restrict these headers to secure transport channels [http://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc6797#section-7.2 as per the HSTS specification]. HSTS has been implemented as per the specification as an [http://hstsiis.codeplex.com/ open source IIS module].
  
 
== Threats ==
 
== Threats ==
  
 
HSTS addresses the following threats:
 
HSTS addresses the following threats:
* User bookmarks or manually types http://somesite.com and is subject to a man-in-the-middle attacker
+
* User bookmarks or manually types http://example.com and is subject to a man-in-the-middle attacker
 
** HSTS automatically upgrades HTTP requests to HTTPS for the target domain
 
** HSTS automatically upgrades HTTP requests to HTTPS for the target domain
 
* Web application that is intended to be purely HTTPS inadvertently contains HTTP links or serves content over HTTP
 
* Web application that is intended to be purely HTTPS inadvertently contains HTTP links or serves content over HTTP
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== Links ==
 
== Links ==
  
[http://dev.chromium.org/sts Chromium Projects / HSTS]
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[http://dev.chromium.org/sts Chromium Projects/HSTS]
  
[http://tools.ietf.org/html/draft-ietf-websec-strict-transport-sec HSTS Spec]
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[http://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc6797 HSTS Spec]
  
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTTP_Strict_Transport_Security Wikipedia.org entry]
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[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTTP_Strict_Transport_Security Wikipedia]
  
[https://developer.mozilla.org/en/Security/HTTP_Strict_Transport_Security MDN Docs for HSTS]
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[https://developer.mozilla.org/en/Security/HTTP_Strict_Transport_Security Mozilla Developer Network]
  
 
[https://www.owasp.org/index.php/Transport_Layer_Protection_Cheat_Sheet OWASP TLS Protection Cheat Sheet]
 
[https://www.owasp.org/index.php/Transport_Layer_Protection_Cheat_Sheet OWASP TLS Protection Cheat Sheet]
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[http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-webapps/2009JulSep/1148.html Google Chrome STS Support]
 
[http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-webapps/2009JulSep/1148.html Google Chrome STS Support]
  
 
+
[http://www.thoughtcrime.org/software/sslstrip/ Moxie Marlinspike's Black Hat 2009 talk on sslstrip, that demonstrates why you need HSTS]
  
 
[[Category:Control|Control]]
 
[[Category:Control|Control]]

Revision as of 10:33, 30 January 2014


Contents

Description

HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS) is an opt-in security enhancement that is specified by a web application through the use of a special response header. Once a supported browser receives this header that browser will prevent any communications from being sent over HTTP to the specified domain and will instead send all communications over HTTPS. It also prevents HTTPS click through prompts on browsers.


The specification has been released and published end of 2012 as RFC 6797 (HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS)) by the IETF. (Reference see in the links at the bottom.)

Examples

Example of the HTTP strict transport security header

 Strict-Transport-Security: max-age=60000

If all subdomains are HTTPS too then the following header is applicable:

 Strict-Transport-Security: max-age=60000; includeSubDomains

Browser Support

Browser
Support Introduced
Internet Explorer
no support as of IE 10 (tested on 2013-01-01)
Firefox
4
Opera
12
Safari
Mavericks (Mac OS X 10.9)
Chrome
4.0.211.0


Server Side

The web server side needs to inject the HSTS header.

For HTTP sites on the same domain it is not recommended to add a HSTS header but to do a permanent redirect (301 status code) to the HTTPS site.

An Apache HTTPd example that will permanently redirect a URL to the identical URL with a HTTPS scheme, is as follows:

<VirtualHost *:80>
       ServerAlias *
       RewriteEngine On
       RewriteRule ^(.*)$ https://%{HTTP_HOST}$1 [redirect=301]
</VirtualHost>

On the HTTPS site configuration the following is needed to add the header as recommended by the standard:

       Header set Strict-Transport-Security "max-age=16070400; includeSubDomains"

The following links show how to set response headers in other web servers:

IIS

Whilst custom headers can be configured in IIS without any extensions, it is not possible to restrict these headers to secure transport channels as per the HSTS specification. HSTS has been implemented as per the specification as an open source IIS module.

Threats

HSTS addresses the following threats:

  • User bookmarks or manually types http://example.com and is subject to a man-in-the-middle attacker
    • HSTS automatically upgrades HTTP requests to HTTPS for the target domain
  • Web application that is intended to be purely HTTPS inadvertently contains HTTP links or serves content over HTTP
    • HSTS automatically upgrades HTTP requests to HTTPS for the target domain
  • A man-in-the-middle attacker attempts to intercept traffic from a victim user using an invalid certificate and hopes the user will accept the bad certificate
    • HSTS does not allow a user to override the invalid certificate message


Links

Chromium Projects/HSTS

HSTS Spec

Wikipedia

Mozilla Developer Network

OWASP TLS Protection Cheat Sheet

Firefox STS Support

Google Chrome STS Support

Moxie Marlinspike's Black Hat 2009 talk on sslstrip, that demonstrates why you need HSTS