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Star Wars: I Find Your Lack of Segmentation Disturbing

It was a lack of network segmentation what foiled the Empire in StarWars

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For a more detailed technical look at network segmentation, read this guide by Cory Johnson & Matt Keeley.

After re-watching the original film in preparation for seeing the upcoming Star Wars: Rogue One, I identified the real Phantom Menace. I realized that a simple lack of network segmentation was actually the ultimate cause behind the downfall of the evil Empire.

Think about it, how many times did R2-D2 plug into any port and basically save the entire rebellion? I can easily think of at least 3 examples:

1. Accessing 'Entire' Imperial Network – Obi-Wan KenOwnMe

Plugging into any port gives you access to the “entire Imperial network,” according to “Jedi-hacker” Obi-Wan Kenobi. This is pretty convenient for R2-D2, allowing him to find the schematics and show them how to disable the tractor beam so that they can escape with the Princess on the Millennium Falcon, (which brings me to item #2) …

2. Finding Princess Leia - Lookin' for Love in Alderaan Places

By plugging in anywhere, apparently they also have full access to the prisoner records in the detention center, which is how they realize 1) that Princess Leia is even there, 2) that she is about to be executed, and 3) exactly where they can find her to rescue her:

3. Saving the Gang from the Trash Compactors - A Jedi is a Terrible Thing to Waste

Finally… Luke, Han Solo, Chewie, and Princess Leia are ALL about to die, which would pretty much guarantee the downfall of the Rebellion and a 1000 years of prosperity for the evil Empire’s rule of the galaxy… but apparently R2-D2 can plug in anywhere and turn off the garbage compactor system to save their lives:

Cautionary Tale - If You're Not Afraid Yet, You Will Be... You Will Be...

It quickly becomes obvious - one firewall and a little network segmentation would have meant the end of the Rebellion. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised to learn in the new Star Wars: Rogue One that the plans for the Death Star were stolen from an insecure open network file share (*SPOILER ALERT*).

Let this be a cautionary tale. Forget lightsabers and blasters. Even the ability to destroy a planet is insignificant next to the power of network segmentation. Never forget the valuable lesson to be learned from the tragic downfall of our beloved Empire.


Francis brown

About the author, Francis Brown

Co-Founder and Board Member

Francis Brown, CISA, CISSP, MCSE, is the Co-founder and Board Member of Bishop Fox. Before founding Bishop Fox, Francis served as an IT Security Specialist with the Global Risk Assessment team of Honeywell International where he performed network and application penetration testing, product security evaluations, incident response, and risk assessments of critical infrastructure. Prior to that, Francis was a consultant with the Ernst & Young Advanced Security Centers and conducted network, application, wireless, and remote access penetration tests for Fortune 500 clients.

Francis has presented his research at leading conferences such as Black Hat USA, DEF CON, RSA, InfoSec World, ToorCon, and HackCon and has been cited in numerous industry and academic publications. Francis holds a Bachelor of Science and Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania with a major in Computer Science and Engineering and a minor in Psychology. While at Penn, Francis taught operating system implementation, C programming, and participated in DARPA-funded research into advanced intrusion prevention system techniques.

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