Subject: Re: the daily/weekly/monthly scripts
To: Sam Carleton <>
From: Greg A. Woods <>
List: tech-security
Date: 07/25/2001 01:56:30
[ On Tuesday, July 24, 2001 at 20:26:22 (-0400), Sam Carleton wrote: ]
> Subject: Re: the daily/weekly/monthly scripts
> Well, what I have done is set the $MAILTO enviornment variable in
> daily.conf/weekly.conf/monthly.conf to my normal email address
>  When testing the script, my email address ends up
> in the To: field so I do believe that all will work find tonight.  This account
> is on a different machine, but the firewall is able to send mail to it.

Note that'll only catch e-mail sent by those scripts, not any other mail
that might be sent by system jobs to root.....  Setting a single alias
is not only easier (one file to edit, one command to update), but also
guarantees all mail to root will be forwarded.

> P.S.  I did not know that it was a bad thing for root to use a mail program.
> Is that because of virus?  Or something else?

Well, generally speaking you should do as little as possible as root,
regardless of what you're doing.  However with e-mail there are many
more dangers, and many less obvious dangers, even if you use what you
think is a brain-dead-simple mail reader such as /usr/bin/mail.  "Smart"
mail readers are even more likely susceptible to attacks by worms and
the like too.

About the only safe way to read mail as root is with a pager, and even
then you could end up doing something unexpected and possibly dangerous
(pagers like "less" have so many features that unexpected actions can be
triggered even more easily).

							Greg A. Woods

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