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How to Unsecure a Secure Access Database

ADezii
Expert 5K+
P: 8,652
On several occasions, we've come across situations in which our Members have inherited secured, legacy Databases and were told to either eliminate the security mechanism on these Databases or restructure them. In these, and similar circumstances, it is very helpful to know you can 'unsecure' a 'secure' Access Database. These are the steps necessary to accomplish this:

  1. Log on as a Member of the Admins Group.
  2. Grant full permissions, including Administer permission, to the built-in Users Group for all Objects in the Database.
  3. Put the Admin User back in the Admins Group if he isn't there.
  4. Clear the Password for the Admin User.
  5. Exit Access.
  6. Restart Access, and log on as Admin.
  7. Create a New, blank Database, and import all the secured Database's Objects using the File ==> Get External Data ==> Import command.

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    1.  
    2. NOTE: The trick to this technique is to give an unsecured Group (Users) full permissions on all the Objects and then to transfer ownership of the Database and all its Objects to an unsecured User (Admin). Keep in mind that the Admin User and the Users Group have the same SID (Security Identifier) across all Workgroups. Therefore, these accounts are not secure. Full permissions for all Objects was granted to the Users Group in Step #2 and ownerships of all the Database Objects was transferred to the unsecured User (Admin) in Step #7 by nature of the Import by the Admin User.
Sep 8 '07 #1
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4 Comments


P: 21
Also, if you have been given this task, but nobody knows a login for the Admins group, then sometimes there is a simple workaround:

Open access (not a database). Make sure that you are using Access in the default Workgroup Information File (WIF):

Tools -> Security -> Workgroup Administrator...

Click Join...

Select the default Workgroup Information File (System.mdw)

OK

Once you are part of the default WIF, try opening the database from within Access. Oftentimes the developers fail to restrict the database to their specific WIF. If so, this will work.

If that doesn't work, these is another way, but I don't want people to know how to crack my databases either so I'd rather not put those here. The ultimate truth is that Access is not designed for high-level security, and there is usually a pretty simple way to bypass it.
Oct 30 '07 #2

ADezii
Expert 5K+
P: 8,652
Also, if you have been given this task, but nobody knows a login for the Admins group, then sometimes there is a simple workaround:

Open access (not a database). Make sure that you are using Access in the default Workgroup Information File (WIF):

Tools -> Security -> Workgroup Administrator...

Click Join...

Select the default Workgroup Information File (System.mdw)

OK

Once you are part of the default WIF, try opening the database from within Access. Oftentimes the developers fail to restrict the database to their specific WIF. If so, this will work.

If that doesn't work, these is another way, but I don't want people to know how to crack my databases either so I'd rather not put those here. The ultimate truth is that Access is not designed for high-level security, and there is usually a pretty simple way to bypass it.
Thanks Luke, for the pointers.
Oct 30 '07 #3

P: 1
I have tried to do the above and I am still unable to open the database.

Can someone please help me.
Jan 12 '08 #4

ADezii
Expert 5K+
P: 8,652
I have tried to do the above and I am still unable to open the database.

Can someone please help me.
  1. How far were you able to get into the Unsecuring Process?
  2. At exactly which point did you fail?
  3. Did you log on as a member of the Admins Group?
  4. Are you using the same Workgroup File that created the original Database?
  5. What exactly was the end result?
  6. Is the New Database secure?
  7. Provide as many details as possible.
Jan 13 '08 #5