Two U.S. senators have demanded an investigation into Amazon Web Services to determine whether the cloud provider broke the law by failing to secure infrastructure that was compromised in the recent Capital One breach. 

Paige Thompson, a former AWS software engineer, has been accused of the attack on Capital One and 30 other organizations. It's alleged that Thompson gained access to Capital One data stored on Amazon's cloud computing platform, AWS, in March 2019, downloaded the data and then stored it on a private server. The breach is said to impact over 100 million US and Canadian customers and applicants of the financial institution. 

Reports have focused on a misconfigured web application firewall (WAF) hosted by the bank in the AWS cloud as the leading contributor to the attack. 

It's believed that Thompson exploited this to trigger a Server Side Request Forgery (SSRF) attack, tricking the WAF into running non-permitted commands that enabled her to talk to the AWS "metadata" service in order to obtain key credentials. 

Senators Ron Wyden and Elizabeth Warren are now asking the FTC in an open letter to investigate if "Amazon's failure to secure the servers rented to Capital One may have violated federal law."

It noted that Google since 2013 and Microsoft since 2017 have mandated protections against SSRF attacks in their products, yet Amazon continues to profit off of defective cloud computing services sold to businesses, government agencies, and the general public. 

Security experts expect AWS to refute the claim, as it has argued in the past that had Capital One not misconfigured its WAF, the SSRF attack would not have even been possible. 

For access to the primarily recognized industry-standard for security configuration guidance, visit the Center for Internet Security CIS Benchmarks section of our website and get started identifying and mitigating known security vulnerabilities across a wide range of platforms, including cloud services like AWS. 
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