Self-Disclosure Heals Many Wounds

Episode Summary

This week in security news: some great info on cloud security breaches and vulnerabilities, various insights on the S3 Bucket Negligence Award, some updates from AWS, and more!

Episode Show Notes & Transcript



Corey: This is the AWS Morning Brief: Security Edition. AWS is fond of saying security is job zero. That means it’s nobody in particular’s job, which means it falls to the rest of us. Just the news you need to know, none of the fluff.

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Corey: Well, we’re certainly ending 2021 with a whirlwind in the security space. Log4J continues to haunt us, while AWS took not only an 
outage but also a bit of a security blunder that they managed to turn into a messaging win. Listen on.

But first, the Community. A depressing review of 2021’s “Cloud Security Breaches and Vulnerabilities.” Honestly, it seems like there are just so damned many ways for bad security to set the things we care about on fire. The takeaways are actionable though. Stop using static long-lived credentials and start with the basics before you get fancy.

Sennheiser scores itself an S3 Bucket Negligence Award, and of all the countries in which to suffer a data breach, I’ve got to say that Germany is at the bottom of the list. They do not mess around with data protection there.

And, Holy hell, AWS inadvertently granted the role its support teams use to access customer accounts access to S3 objects. It lasted for ten hours, and while there are mitigations out there, this is far from the first time that AWS has biffed it with regard to an unreviewed change making it into a managed IAM policy. This needs to be addressed. If you’ve got specific questions about how those things are handled, reach out to your account team; but it’s a terrible look. But there’s more to come in a second here.

Corey: This episode is sponsored in part by my friends at Cloud Academy. Something special for you folks: If you missed their offer on Black Friday or Cyber Monday or whatever day of the week doing sales it is, good news, they’ve opened up their Black Friday promotion for a very limited time. Same deal: $100 off a yearly plan, 249 bucks a year for the highest quality cloud and tech skills content. Nobody else is going to get this, and you have to act now because they have assured me this is not going to last for much longer. Go to, hit the ‘Start Free Trial’ button on the homepage and use the promo code, ‘CLOUD’ when checking out. That’s C-L-O-U-D. Like loud—what I am—with a C in front of it. They’ve got a free trial, too, so you’ll get seven days to try it out to make sure it really is a good fit. You’ve got nothing to lose except your ignorance about cloud. My thanks to Cloud Academy once again for sponsoring my ridiculous nonsense.

A bit off the beaten path, this week’s S3 Bucket Negligence Award goes to the government of Ghana. This one is pretty bad. I mean, you can’t exactly opt out of doing business with your government, you know?

Now, AWS has two things I want to talk about. The first is that they offer a way to “Simplify setup of Amazon Detective with AWS Organizations.” I’m actually enthusiastic about this one because there’s a significant lack of security tooling available to folks at the lower end of the market. A bunch of companies seem to start off targeting this segment, but soon realize that there’s a better future in selling things to bigger companies for $200,000 a month instead of $20.

Now, “AWSSupportServiceRolePolicy Informational Update.” Now, you heard a minute ago, I was initially extremely unhappy about this mistake. That said, I am such a fan of this notification that I can’t even articulate it without sounding like I’m fanboying. Because mistakes happen and talking about those mistakes and why defense in depth mitigates the harm of those mistakes goes a long way. This affirms my trust in AWS rather than harming it. Meanwhile Azure has absolutely nothing to say about why their tenant separation is aspirational at best.

And lastly a bit of tooling story here. To end up the year, I’ve been kicking the tires on aws-sso-cli over on GitHub, which is a tool for using AWS SSO for both the CLI and web console. I don’t know why the native SSO tooling is quite as trash as it is, but it’s a problem. There’s a lot of value to using SSO but AWS hides it as if the entire thing were under NDA. Thank you for listening. It’s been a heck of a year as we’ve launched the security portion of this weekly nonsense. I’ll talk to you more in 2022. Stay safe.

Corey: Thank you for listening to the AWS Morning Brief: Security Edition with the latest in AWS security that actually matters. Please follow AWS Morning Brief on Apple Podcast, Spotify, Overcast—or wherever the hell it is you find the dulcet tones of my voice—and be sure to sign up for the Last Week in AWS newsletter at

Announcer: This has been a HumblePod production. Stay humble.
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