Blackboard Authentication Error Feb 01 2006 02:30PM
jdo24 cornell edu

Here at my university we use Blackboard as the chosen tool for having online class websites, grading, chatrooms, announcements, quizzing, etc., in a convenient fashion.

Blackboard works alongside our Kerberos authentication to be sure that the person who is accessing the information is the correct one.

Tonight I discovered that there is a way that Blackboard fails in doing this. When Blackboard has been idle for so long (ten minutes or so, I think), it will de-authenticate you from accessing resources. So, let's say I'm logged in as mrm5, I use it, then I walk away from the computer. If someone comes up and tries to gain access to the still-up Blackboard site, after they click a link they will be prompted with a password entry screen.

This presumably means that in order to access mrm5's stuff, you need to enter mrm5's information. But, instead, if you enter another user's information, such as ppq2, and enter the correct password for ppq2, you will now be logged in under mrm5's account instead of ppq2's, and able to do everything that mrm5 could have if they were logged in, including changing personal information, "enrolling" in class, making posts on boards, taking quizzes, etc.

I have no idea and no way of checking to see if other universities are susceptible to the same problem, but either way this is something that
needs to be fixed.


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