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Search - "don't cry after your code"
Have you ever had the moment when you were left speechless because a software system was so fucked up and you just sat there and didn't know how to grasp it? I've seen some pretty bad code, products and services but yesterday I got to the next level.
A little background: I live in Europe and we have GDPR so we are required by law to protect our customer data. We need quite a bit to fulfill our services and it is stored in our ERP system which is developed by another company.
My job is to develop services that interact with that system and they provided me with a REST service to achieve that. Since I know how sensitive that data is, I took extra good care of how I processed the data, stored secrets and so on.
Yesterday, when I was developing a new feature, my first WTF moment happened: I was able to see the passwords of every user - in CLEAR TEXT!!
I sat there and was just shocked: We trust you with our most valuable data and you can't even hash our fuckn passwords?
But that was not the end: After I grabbed a coffee and digested what I just saw, I continued to think: OK, I'm logged in with my user and I have pretty massive rights to the system. Since I now knew all the passwords of my colleagues, I could just try it with a different account and see if that works out too.
I found a nice user "test" (guess the password), logged on to the service and tried the same query again. With the same result. You can guess how mad I was - I immediately changed my password to a pretty hard.
And it didn't even end there because obviously user "test" also had full write access to the system and was probably very happy when I made him admin before deleting him on his own credentials.
It never happened to me - I just sat there and didn't know if I should laugh or cry, I even had a small existential crisis because why the fuck do I put any effort in it when the people who are supposed to put a lot of effort in it don't give a shit?
It took them half a day to fix the security issues but now I have 0 trust in the company and the people working for it.
So why - if it only takes you half a day to do the job you are supposed (and requires by law) to do - would you just not do it? Because I was already mildly annoyed of your 2+ months delay at the initial setup (and had to break my own promises to my boss)?
By sharing this story, I want to encourage everyone to have a little thought on the consequences that bad software can have on your company, your customers and your fellow devs who have to use your services.
I'm not a security guy but I guess every developer should have a basic understanding of security, especially in a GDPR area.2