Cookie 'Secure' attribute-really secure?

Today I just stumbled upon a discussion somewhere over net. I saw reply from Jeff (Chair, OWASP) to question about 'secure' attribute of cookie-how much secure it is? Well, it's a bit tricky, means when server is sending the secure attribute to the client (browser), the client must have initiated the SSL connection before it happens. Otherwise the server will send the set-cookie:secure flag on non-ssl channel itself. So you will need to ensure that the client has established a SSL connection to the server before the server sends a set cookie response.
In Jeff's words:

If what you expect is full SSL protection for your cookies, there are two problems with this. First, as you've noted, your cookie might get exposed in a "set-cookie" header that you inadvertently include in a non-SSL
response.

Second, and probably worse, the "secure" flag doesn't really mean use SSL all the time. If you do send the "set-cookie" header in a non-SSL response, the client has the option to remember that, and send the cookie back in
non-SSL requests -- even though the "secure" flag is set.



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