SecureMyi.com Security and Systems Management Newsletter for the IBM i                 June 26, 2013 - Vol 3, Issue 31
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Feature Article

5 Ways to Control Access using Application Administration

By Carol Woodbury   Skyview Partners, Inc.

Never heard of Application Administration? Donít be surprised. Although itís full of function, itís one of little-known features of IBM i. Application Administration (or App Admin as itís commonly called) has been around for a while but the additional features provided in the latest releases as well as recent Technology Releases makes this a feature worth exploring again.

Tip #1 explains how to configure Application Administration access controls. Tip #4 explains the most recently added features, including the ability to control network access (ftp, ODBC, etc) and Tip #5 explains how you can use App Admin with your own applications.

Application Administration

Application Administration is a function of i Navigator. It allows you to configure who can see certain functions or perform certain tasks. IBM created App Admin because there are times when you need to control access to something, but that something is a function or task and there is no object to restrict access to. For example, when you want to restrict access to a database file, you set *PUBLIC authority to *EXCLUDE, and no one can access the file. But if you want to control who can perform service traces, for example, there is no corresponding object to grant *EXCLUDE authority to. Therefore, App Admin was created to provide a facility for controlling functions.

To launch App Admin, right click on the system name in i Navigator and choose Application Administration. If you havenít already signed on to the system, youíll be presented with a sign on dialog.

Note: To configure most aspects of App Admin, youíll need to sign on with a profile that has at least *SECADM special authority.

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In This Issue


Featured Article - Application Administration

Security Shorts - About UserID & Password

Industry News and Calendar

Security Resources

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IBM i Security Calendar of Events


Live Security Related Webcasts and Training for IBM i

5 Must-Control Access Points for Optimum IBM i Security and Compliance
with Guy Marmorat - President Cilasoft

Live Webcast - Presented by Cilasoft Security Solutions
Thursday, June 27 Noon CDT
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An Auditor's View: Assessing IBM i Security Vulnerabilities
Live Webcast - Presented by PowerTech
Thursday, June 27 1:00pm CDT
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Live Hands-On - QAUDJRN Auditing and Forensic Analysis Workshop for IBM i
with Dan Riehl

Full Length Training Workshop - July 10-11
Dan Riehl presents this 2-Day Live Online Hands-on Workshop.
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Live Hands-On - IBM i Security and Vulnerability Assessment Workshop for IBM i
with Dan Riehl

Full Length Training Workshop - July 15-18
Dan Riehl presents this 3.5-Day Live Online Hands-on Workshop.
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Get your FTP Server into Compliance
Live Webcast - Presented by Linoma Software
Thursday, July 18 Noon CDT
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Live Hands-On - Expanded Security Workshop for IBM i
with Dan Riehl

Full Length Training Workshop - July 23-26
Dan Riehl presents this 4-Day Live Online Hands-on Workshop.
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Live Hands-On - Expanded Control Language Programming Workshop
with Dan Riehl

Full Length Training Workshop - August 19-23
Dan Riehl, Co-Author of the textbook Control Language Programming for the IBM i
presents this 5-Day Live Online Hands-on Workshop.
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Live Hands-On - IBM i System Administration and Control Workshop
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Full Length Training Workshop - September 9-13
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COMMON 2013 Fall Conference and Expo
Three Day Conference and Expo - September 9-11
Renaissance Grand St. Louis ē St. Louis, Missouri
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Security Shorts -

Yes, I have a Numeric UserID and Password. And You?

By Dan Riehl

My UserID is 77 and My Password is 123456

The Object Naming rules for IBM i state that an object name must begin with an alphabetic character including A-Z, #, $, @, and that the remaining characters (up to 10 in total) can contain A-Z, 0-9, #, $, @, _ ,and a .(period). The object names in the QSYS file system are not case sensitive.

However, when it comes to User Profile names and Passwords, an interesting phenomenon comes into play.

When we create a user profile, we specify a User Profile name and, optionally, we specify a Password, as in the following example. (For these examples, we assume a Password Level (System Value QPWDLVL) of 0 or 1, limiting a password to a maximum length of 10 characters.)

CRTUSRPRF   USRPRF(BOBSMITH)   PASSWORD(PASS1WORD5)

Now, when the user needs to log on, his user ID is BOBSMITH, and his password is PASS1WORD5. Simple and straightforward.

But consider this next example:

CRTUSRPRF   USRPRF(Q12345)   PASSWORD(Q11111)

When a user profile is created using this command, the user can actually log on using two different user IDs and two different passwords. It's a bit weird, but let's look at it in more detail.

  • The user can log on with UserID Q12345 with a Password Q11111.
  • The user can log on with UserID Q12345 with an all-numeric Password 11111.
  • The user can log on with an all-numeric UserID 12345 with a Password Q11111.
  • The user can log-on with an all-numeric UserID 12345 with an all-numeric Password 11111.

The secret to this seemingly strange support lies in the first character of the UserID and/or Password being the specific letter Q, followed only by digits. When this is the case, the letter Q becomes an optional part of the UserID and/or Password during the Logon process.

You can view more about this Q digit support by reviewing the F1=Help text of the CRTUSRPRF(Create User Profile) command.

As the system administrator, you can enforce policy to disallow the creation of a Q digits User Profile, but a user can change his or her password to a Q digits password using the Change Password (CHGPWD) command and/or Change Password API.

In order to restrict users from setting their passwords to Q digits (e.g., Q11111), you can either set the system value QPWDLMTAJC to the value 1 or include the value *DGTLMTAJC in the system value QPWDRULES. Either of these settings prohibit the use of adjacent digits in a password when changed by the user.

Oh, Yes, One more thing. Make sure that your password Minimum Length is at least 3. (I hope it's more like 6,7 or 8). Minimum length is set by the system value QPWDMINLEN, or in the QPWDRULES system value using the value *MINLENnnn, where nnn is a number from 1-10, or 1-128, depending upon the value of your QPWDLVL system value.

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