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Tech blog on web, security & embedded

When conducting a penetration test (also known as a hack test) on a website, one of the first things that will catch my eye is the configured (or better, not-configured) security headers on the targeted website. Security headers are a defense-in-depth#Information_security) measure, in the form of response headers, that let the browser know what is allowed and what is not. Browsers will respect the rules defined by these headers and thereby protect visitors from client-side attacks and potentially leaking sensitive information.

When you enabled Google Analytics (GA) on your website maybe you thought "I don't really have another viable option". Or maybe you thought "the negative effect on my visitors isn't that bad, is it?" Both are relatable, but recently Data Protection Authorities have put GA under a microscope and concluded it actually is pretty bad. Some things in GA violate the GDPR. Apart from the question of whether it is legal or not, the fact that your visitors are tracked across the internet - we feel - is just awful. And, as it turns out, you do have options.

Sending documents over the internet can be a pain. Email providers generally support attachments with a maximum size between 10 and 50 MB, for larger files one would need to find another way. Most people would probably use one of the many public cloud or file sender solutions. But what if the files to be sent contain personal information, medical information or are private family photos? And how do you know that only the recipient can access and download these files?

It is common wisdom that one should avoid implementing their own cryptography if at all possible. This is generally good wisdom as writing correct cryptography code can be very tricky and takes quite a bit of time to get done right.

As owner and technical lead of our company I'm very motivated to keep up to speed with all new developments and to continuously innovate our tech stack. Nevertheless, every once in a while I find myself lacking in in-depth, hands-on experience in languages and tools I really want to be on top of. At that moment, I know I need to hit pause and take the time for a deep dive, in the form of a personal learning project.

You might have seen the logo above on your identity card or passport. If you have it on there, then your card contains a NFC chip that allows it to be read by a computer. This way airport customs is supposed to more securely determine if your passport is really yours. But of course we could also try to read it ourselves with our own NFC reader.

With the current pandemic situation, it is hard to hold meetings at an appropriate and safe distance. Looking for secure alternatives, our local city government approached Tweede golf with developing a novel authenticated variant of videoconferencing, with the intention of holding city council meetings using this solution.