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seccomp (short for secure computing mode) is a computer security facility in the Linux kernel. seccomp allows a process to make a one-way transition into a "secure" state where it cannot make any system calls except
write() to already-open file descriptors. Should it attempt any other system calls, the kernel will either just log the event or terminate the process with SIGKILL or SIGSYS. In this sense, it does not virtualize the system's resources but isolates the process from them entirely.
|Original author(s)||Andrea Arcangeli|
|Initial release||March 8, 2005; 18 years ago (2005-03-08)|
|License||GNU General Public License|
seccomp mode is enabled via the
PR_SET_SECCOMP argument, or (since Linux kernel 3.17) via the system call. seccomp mode used to be enabled by writing to a file,
/proc/self/seccomp, but this method was removed in favor of
prctl(). In some kernel versions, seccomp disables the
RDTSC x86 instruction, which returns the number of elapsed processor cycles since power-on, used for high-precision timing.
seccomp-bpf is an extension to seccomp that allows filtering of system calls using a configurable policy implemented using Berkeley Packet Filter rules. It is used by OpenSSH and vsftpd as well as the Google Chrome/Chromium web browsers on ChromeOS and Linux. (In this regard seccomp-bpf achieves similar functionality, but with more flexibility and higher performance, to the older systrace—which seems to be no longer supported for Linux.)