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From: Tim Cross <theophilusx@gmail.com>
To: Ihor Radchenko <yantar92@posteo.net>
Cc: emacs-orgmode@gnu.org
Subject: Re: [PATCH] ob-core: add org-confirm-babel-evaluate-cell custom variable
Date: Fri, 16 Dec 2022 18:22:26 +1100	[thread overview]
Message-ID: <86h6xvvl30.fsf@gmail.com> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <87o7s3swyt.fsf@localhost>

Ihor Radchenko <yantar92@posteo.net> writes:

> Tim Cross <theophilusx@gmail.com> writes:
>> I do wonder if it would be a good idea to try and document when org will
>> evaluate code in org files. This would include not just babel block
>> evaluation, but also elisp evaluation in table formulas, block header
>> arguments, file option arguments and possibly other subtle cases. This
>> may enable us to see if we have the granularity of controls correct or
>> identify inconsistencies and omissions. This information might then be
>> useful in defining a security model which could then identify what
>> controls are actually necessary and how to implement them to provide a
>> more straight-forward configuration for end users. It could also provide
>> valuable input into what additional tests may be necessary to ensure
>> things are working as expected. 
> 17.13 Code Evaluation and Security Issues

That page is a good start. However, I think it highlights why not having
a clear model limits the utility of the options being provided.

Consider this scenario -

I am a reasonably experienced Emacs user, but wouldn't describe myself
as proficient with elisp. I can do some basic stuff and I have an
init.el file which I basically understand, although there are some
borrowed bits which to be honest, I don't fully understand.

I use org mode a lot. I really like literate programming and find the
whole babel stuff really cool. I also make extensive use of tables and
the spreadsheet capability to track statistics on my projects and use
gnuplot, ditta and plantuml to generate plot, diagrams etc from that
data. Obviously, I trust all the code in these files as I wrote it!

On occasion, I get org files from colleagues. While I do basically trust
my colleagues, I don't want to just blindly allow execution of the code
in these files. I would like to check what the code does before agreeing
to allow it to run.

On very rare occasions, I get an org file from an untrusted source. In
this situation, I want iron clad assurances none of the code from this
file is executed.

Based on the information in section 17.13, how do I configure my Emacs
so that

1. All the code in the files I wrote just runs and doesn't bother me with
annoying execute questions.

2. Code in files from colleagues is shown to me and I'm asked if it
should be executed. Once I say yes, I don't want to be bothered about it
again i.e. next time I open that file, I want org mode to know I trust

3. Absolutely no code in files which are not from the two preceding
sources is to be executed unless I explicitly approve it. 

How does this fictitious user achieve this configuration? Is it a
reasonable expectation that most users will be able to write the elisp
necessary to achieve this model?

It feels like what we currently have is a selection of disconnect knobs
which the user can tweak, but with no over-arching mechanism to help
manage these settings for various scenarios.

Finally, are we 100% certain that these different code evaluation
circumstances are the only ones? Can we be certain there isn't areas
where options or variables are set which couldn't be used to evaluate
code (similar to be previously identified execution of code in block
headers which occurred before the checks on code evaluation?)?  

It also feels like the approach we have taken here is almost a throwback
to a past era where he had a lot more trust. What we seem to have is
protection against accidental execution of code rather than protection
against code with malicious intent which has been crafted to be
difficult to spot and deliberately takes advantages of small 'holes' or
over-sight in the controls supplied.

  reply	other threads:[~2022-12-16  7:56 UTC|newest]

Thread overview: 49+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2022-12-10 20:28 [PATCH] ob-core: add org-confirm-babel-evaluate-cell custom variable Tom Gillespie
2022-12-11  2:58 ` Max Nikulin
2022-12-11 20:27   ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-11 20:37     ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-11 20:46     ` Kyle Meyer
2022-12-11 21:08       ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-12 10:20         ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-13  1:53           ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-13  9:03             ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-13 16:31             ` Max Nikulin
2022-12-13 21:16               ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-14 16:40                 ` Max Nikulin
2022-12-14 18:24                   ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-15  9:18                     ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-15  9:25                       ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-15  9:57                       ` tomas
2022-12-15  9:10                   ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-15 12:10                     ` Max Nikulin
2022-12-15 12:25                       ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-15 14:46                         ` Max Nikulin
2022-12-15 21:08                           ` Tim Cross
2022-12-16  6:07                             ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-16  7:22                               ` Tim Cross [this message]
2022-12-18 14:19                                 ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-18 21:37                                   ` Tim Cross
2022-12-20  0:00                                     ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-20  0:06                                       ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-25 11:00                                         ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-18 14:12                           ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-25 11:06             ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-29 15:58               ` Bastien Guerry
2022-12-29 16:33                 ` Max Nikulin
2022-12-29 16:35                 ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-30  8:52                   ` Bastien
2022-12-30 11:10                     ` Max Nikulin
2022-12-30 17:43                     ` Tom Gillespie
2022-12-31 13:48                       ` Ihor Radchenko
2022-12-31 16:15                         ` Tom Gillespie
2023-01-02  8:34                         ` [SECURITY] Arbitrary code evaluation security in Org (was: [PATCH] ob-core: add org-confirm-babel-evaluate-cell custom variable) Ihor Radchenko
2023-01-02 10:59                           ` [SECURITY] Arbitrary code evaluation security in Org Greg Minshall
2023-01-03  9:52                             ` [SECURITY] Tangling can overwrite arbitrary tangling targets, including important user files (was: [SECURITY] Arbitrary code evaluation security in Org) Ihor Radchenko
2023-01-02 19:00                           ` [SECURITY] Arbitrary code evaluation security in Org (was: [PATCH] ob-core: add org-confirm-babel-evaluate-cell custom variable) Tim Cross
2023-01-03 11:00                             ` Ihor Radchenko
2023-01-07 13:12                               ` Ihor Radchenko
2023-01-02 15:13                         ` [PATCH] ob-core: add org-confirm-babel-evaluate-cell custom variable Bastien Guerry
2023-01-02 15:17                           ` Ihor Radchenko
2023-01-02 15:15                       ` Bastien
2022-12-13  4:16           ` Kyle Meyer
2022-12-13 16:15     ` Max Nikulin

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