Security Portal: Variable Pointers and Security

“If a programmer works with primarily static, homogenous data,
then variable pointers may not be necessary. But with dynamic data,
accessing that information effectively by the program may not be
possible without pointers to dynamic memory locations….”

What security risks arise when pointers get changed and
data remaining in memory cells becomes forgotten? Obviously, in
systems with robust data turnover, the question may be moot.

But in processing environments where dormant accounts are the norm,
unmapped data residing in memory or in disk storage systems creates
formidable security problems.”

“First, proprietary data may hold over in storage devices whose
permissions could change without anyone knowing sensitive data
still remains. Unauthorized individuals suddenly have access rights
to data beyond their security clearances. For example, executive
salaries may be accessible by accounting clerks if disk storage is
reused with a lower permission level.”


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