Archive | August, 2014

IronWASP – Open Source Web Security Testing Platform

The New Acunetix V12 Engine


IronWASP (Iron Web application Advanced Security testing Platform) is an open source system for web application vulnerability testing. It is designed to be customizable to the extent where users can create their own custom security scanners using it. Though an advanced user with Python/Ruby scripting expertise would be able to make full use of the platform, a lot of the tool’s features are simple enough to be used by absolute beginners.

IronWASP - Open Source Web Security Testing Platform

Features

  • It’s Free and Open source
  • GUI based and very easy to use, no security expertise required
  • Powerful and effective scanning engine
  • Supports recording Login sequence
  • Reporting in both HTML and RTF formats – Click here to view the sample report
  • Checks for over 25 different kinds of well known web vulnerabilities
  • False Positives detection support
  • False Negatives detection suppport
  • Industry leading built-in scripting engine that supports Python and Ruby
  • Extensibile via plug-ins or modules in Python, Ruby, C# or VB.NET

Bundled Modules

  • WiHawk – WiFi Router Vulnerability Scanner
  • XmlChor – Automatic XPATH Injection Exploitation Tool
  • IronSAP – SAP Security Scanner
  • SSL Security Checker – Scanner to discover vulnerabilities in SSL installations
  • OWASP Skanda – Automatic SSRF Exploitation Tool
  • CSRF PoC Generator – Tool for automatically generating exploits for CSRF vulnerabilities
  • HAWAS – Tool for automatically detecting and decoding encoded strings and hashes in websites

Plugins

IronWASP has a plugin system that supports Python and Ruby. The version of Python and Ruby used in IronWASP is IronPython and IronRuby which is syntactically similar to CPython and CRuby. However some of the standard libraries might not be available, instead plugin authors can make use of the powerful IronWASP API.

You can download IronWASP here:

ironwasp.zip

Or read more here.

Posted in: Security Software, Web Hacking

Topic: Security Software, Web Hacking


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Twitter Patents Technique To Detect Mobile Malware

The New Acunetix V12 Engine


So it was discovered that Twitter has been granted a patent which covers detection of mobile malware on websites to protect its user base. The patent was filed back in 2012, but well – as we know these things take time.

The method is something like the technology Google uses in Chrome to warn you if a webpage is malicious and it prompts you not to visit.

Twitter Patent to Detect Mobile Malware

It utilises multiple signals to detect mobile malware and protect the user from being infected (by calculating the probably of the page being malicious).

Twitter has been granted a patent for detecting malware on mobile sites, according to a filing made public this month.

According to the patent, filed back in 2012, Twitter could protect users from malware by crawling websites with “an emulated mobile device to cause behaviors to occur which may be malicious.” After Twitter’s bot visits a given mobile site, the “behaviors … are stored [and] classified as hard or soft signals.”

From there, Twitter’s patent describes a method for assessing the “probability of the webpage being malicious,” after which it is “classified as malicious or non-malicious.” Finally, Twitter describes how visitors of the site, the site’s developer, and the “distributor of the webpage” (perhaps the user who tweeted the link) will be alerted if the site has been classified as malware.


It seems like social networks, search engines etc want to take more responsibility for protecting their users (like the malware warnings on search results within Google and the Chrome warning splash page.

They think it adds value to their networks, which it does in a way – and of course it makes the user experience more positive, which is always a benefit. And this is definitely a more pro-active response than just acting on user reports and spam flags.

Most interestingly, the patent mirrors a similar system already implemented by Google on Google.com and within Chrome. Google alerts users with a warning splash page [below] which attempts to block users from accessing the site.

Twitter’s interest in preventing the spread of malware highlights new responsibilities for the social network as it continues to grow. Implementing such a system does not directly affect Twitter in the way the company’s anti-spam efforts have. Instead, this initiative to crawl the mobile web for malware would be a preventative effort to keep Twitter’s name clean.

In VentureBeat’s own tests, Twitter did not flag any sites known by Google for distributing malware on iOS or desktop, suggesting that the tech behind the patent is not publicly in use. Reached for comment, Twitter offered a boilerplate response.

It seems the technology is not yet actually in use on the Twitter platform, as you can still spread malware laden URLs without warning.

Perhaps the technology is still in staging/testing phase – or perhaps they are starting to realise how long it takes to spider the web for malware. A very long time.

It’ll be interesting to see if they start using it soon.

Source: VentureBeat

Posted in: Countermeasures, Malware

Topic: Countermeasures, Malware


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Garmr – Automate Web Application Security Tests

The New Acunetix V12 Engine


Garmr is a tool to inspect the responses from websites for basic security requirements. It includes a set of core test cases implemented in corechecks that are derived from the Mozilla Secure Coding Guidelines which can be found here:

https://wiki.mozilla.org/WebAppSec/Secure_Coding_Guidelines

The purpose of this page is to establish a concise and consistent approach to secure application development of Mozilla web applications and web services. The information provided here will be focused towards web based applications; however, the concepts can be universally applied to applications to implement sound security controls and design.

This page will largely focus on secure guidelines and may provide example code at a later time.

Garmr - Automate Web Application Security Tests

It’s a useful tool, combined with others to automate web application security tests to a decent, fairly comprehensive baseline. It was built to be part of a Continuous Integration process by the Mozilla WebQA team, but could easily be adopted by other teams and used in a similar way – it ouputs a JUnit style XML report that can be consumed by other tools such as Jenkins.

This is why it’s well suited to be used in a tool such as – Gauntlt – Security Testing Framework For Developers & Ops.

Usage

You can download the latest version here:

master.zip

Or read more here.

Posted in: Hacking Tools, Web Hacking

Topic: Hacking Tools, Web Hacking


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Heartbleed Implicated In US Hospital Leak

Use Netsparker


If you’ve been up on your news consumption in the past week or so, you’ll have read about the Chinese hackers who managed to access 4.5 million patient records in a huge US Hospital Leak.

Community Health Systems hacked, records of nearly 4.5 million patients stolen

US Hospital Leak

Now it turns out, the first entry for this attack was via the Heartbleed bug – which should have been fixed months ago.

The Heartbleed flaw is responsible for the high-impact US hospital hacking attack disclosed this week, an unnamed investigator told Bloomberg.

As many as 4.5 million patient records have been exposed in an attack against Community Health Systems, a US hospital group that manages more than 200 hospitals.

China-based attackers stole millions of records which included data such as patient names, Social Security numbers, addresses, birth dates, and phone numbers after breaking into systems. No medical records nor any financial data was exposed by the nonetheless damaging breach, which CHS admitted had taken place between April and June as part of a regulatory filing.

A person “involved in the investigation who wasn’t authorised to comment publicly” blamed the Heartbleed OpenSSL bug for giving hackers a way into healthcare networks, an assessment backed up by a statement by a US security consultancy with a track record in accessing the IT security of government healthcare projects.

“The initial attack vector was through the infamous OpenSSL ‘Heartbleed’ vulnerability which led to the compromise of the information,” according to security consultancy TrustedSec, which was the first to comment on the reported cause of the breach.


It seems like the actual medical records themselves were safe and didn’t get stolen, but pretty much everything else about the patients was taken – including Social Security Numbers, which can be quite valuable.

Honestly, it’s quite sloppy, unpatched Juniper devices on a fairly critical network – they grabbed the VPN login credentials using Heartbleed, and well then I assume they were basically in a giant LAN with all 290 hospitals and they could cherry pick what they wanted.

“This confirmation of the initial attack vector was obtained from a trusted and anonymous source close to the CHS investigation. Attackers were able to glean user credentials from memory on a CHS Juniper device via the Heartbleed vulnerability (which was vulnerable at the time) and use them to login via a VPN,” it added.

“From here, the attackers were able to further their access into CHS by working their way through the network until the estimated 4.5 million patient records were obtained from a database,” it said.

David Kennedy, TrustedSec’s founder and principal consultant, worked at the National Security Agency and the United States Marines in cyber warfare and forensics analysis prior to moving into the private sector. Last November, he testified before Congress on the security shortcomings of HealthCare.gov. So while not directly involved, TrustedSec is a credible commentator on healthcare-related security issues and Kennedy seems connected enough to get the early drop on problems in this area.

Community Health Systems has reportedly hired Mandiant to handle the security response and cleanup necessary in the wake of the breach.

The Heartbleed security bug, first publicly disclosed in early April, stems from a buffer overflow vulnerability in the Heartbeat component of OpenSSL. The vulnerability meant all manner of sensitive data – including encryption keys, bits of traffic, credentials or session keys – might be extracted from unpatched systems.

Back in April we did write about the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Arresting a Heartbleed Hacker. So there were some real hacks executed using Heartbleed, but this one on CHS is a whole new level.

It just makes me wonder what other major governments or organisations have been hacked in similar ways, and don’t even know about it.

Source: The Register

Posted in: Exploits/Vulnerabilities

Topic: Exploits/Vulnerabilities


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Passera – Generate A Unique Strong Password For Every Website

The New Acunetix V12 Engine


We’ve discussed password storage/generation solutions quite often, especially in the news stories about hacks and plain text password leaks, here’s a tool for the more paranoid who don’t want to store their passwords locally or in the cloud.

Passera is a simple tool written in Go that allows users to generate a unique strong password for each website, without the need to store them either locally or with an online service.

Passera - Generate A Unique Strong Password

Passera turns any entered text into a strong password up to 64 characters long and copies it to clipboard. Figure out a decent system for yourself that will allow unique passphases for every website, such as combining website name/url with a phrase that you would not forget. To login, fire up Passera and enter the password you chose and your real password will be copied to the clipboard.

Turn

into

This software is for privacy-aware people that understand the need to have strong unique passwords for each website, yet don’t want to use any password managing software or services. Relying on password managing software means trusting your passwords to be kept safe by a third-party company, or trusting them to a single file on your disk.

Passwords created with Passera are extremely difficult to bruteforce and impossible to revert back to the original regardless of attacker’s knowledge of the source code. If one of your passwords is compromised after an attack on you or a web service, all your other passwords are safe with you.

To make it somewhat more conspicuous, when you start Passera it copies a random password to clipboard. The real password is then only stored in clipboard for 10 seconds, before being overwritten by another random string.

You can download Passera here:

Linux
Mac OSX
Windows

Or read more here.

Posted in: Countermeasures, Security Software

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Hiding A Bitcoin Mining Botnet In The Cloud

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This is a pretty interesting story, and an interesting use (or mis-use) of cloud resources. We’ve covered similar stuff before like the case when Yahoo! was Spreading Bitcoin Mining Botnet Malware Via Ads, and then more recently when the Pirated ‘Watch Dogs’ Game Made A Bitcoin Mining Botnet.

Cloud Security

But this time it’s not malware based, a pair of researchers realised they could automate the sign-up to multiple cloud providers and leverage the free tier/free trial/freemimum accounts to mine Cryptocurrency (in this case Litecoin).

Hackers have long used malware to enslave armies of unwitting PCs, but security researchers Rob Ragan and Oscar Salazar had a different thought: Why steal computing resources from innocent victims when there’s so much free processing power out there for the taking?

At the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas next month Ragan and Salazar plan to reveal how they built a botnet using only free trials and freemium accounts on online application-hosting services—the kind coders use for development and testing to avoid having to buy their own servers and storage. The hacker duo used an automated process to generate unique email addresses and sign up for those free accounts en masse, assembling a cloud-based botnet of around a thousand computers.

That online zombie horde was capable of launching coordinated cyberattacks, cracking passwords, or mining hundreds of dollars a day worth of cryptocurrency. And by assembling that botnet from cloud accounts rather than hijacked computers, Ragan and Salazar believe their creation may have even been legal.

“We essentially built a supercomputer for free,” says Ragan, who along with Salazar works as a researcher for the security consultancy Bishop Fox. “We’re definitely going to see more malicious activity coming out of these services.”

Companies like Google, Heroku, Cloud Foundry, CloudBees, and many more offer developers the ability to host their applications on servers in faraway data centers, often reselling computing resources owned by companies like Amazon and Rackspace. Ragan and Salazar tested the account creation process for more than 150 of those services. Only a third of them required any credentials beyond an email address—additional information like a credit card, phone number, or filling out a captcha. Choosing among the easy two-thirds, they targeted about 15 services that let them sign up for a free account or a free trial. The researchers won’t name those vulnerable services, to avoid helping malicious hackers follow in their footsteps. “A lot of these companies are startups trying to get as many users as quickly as possible,” says Salazar. “They’re not really thinking about defending against these kinds of attacks.”


Other than mining Cryptocoins this distributed super computer could easily be used for other (more nefarious) purposes such as password cracking, DDoSing or doing any other large scale parallel task.

Mining Litecoins is a low hanging fruit though, low technical barrier and instant money – you don’t have to deal with other people in terms of renting out a DDoSing botnet etc. All you have to deal with is an exchange, and withdrawing your money.

Also $1750 a week isn’t bad money!

Ragan and Salazar created their automated rapid-fire signup and confirmation process with the email service Mandrill and their own program running on Google App Engine. A service called FreeDNS.afraid.org let them create unlimited email addresses on different domains; to create realistic-looking addresses they used variations on actual addresses that they found dumped online after past data breaches. Then they used Python Fabric, a tool that lets developers manage multiple Python scripts, to control the hundreds of computers over which they had taken possession.

One of their first experiments with their new cloud-based botnet was mining the cryptocurrency Litecoin. (That second-most-used cryptocoin is better suited to the cloud computers’ CPUs than Bitcoin, which is most easily mined with GPU chips.) They found that they could produce about 25 cents per account per day based on Litecoin’s exchange rates at the time. Putting their entire botnet behind that effort would have generated $1,750 a week. “And it’s all on someone else’s electricity bill,” says Ragan.

Ragan and Salazar were wary of doing real damage by hogging the services’ electricity or processing, however, so they turned off their mining operation in a matter of hours. For testing, however, they left a small number of mining programs running for two weeks. None were ever detected or shut down.

Aside from Litecoin mining, the researchers say they could have used their cloudbots for more malicious ends—like distributed password-cracking, click fraud, or denial of service attacks that flood target websites with junk traffic. Because the cloud services offer far more networking bandwidth than the average home computer possesses, they say their botnet could have funneled about 20,000 PCs-worth of attack traffic at any given target. Ragan and Salazar weren’t able to actually measure the size of their attack, however, because none of their test targets were able to stay online long enough for an accurate reading. “We’re still looking for volunteers,” Ragan jokes.

More disturbing yet, Ragan and Salazar say targets would find it especially tough to filter out an attack launched from reputable cloud services. “Imagine a distributed denial-of-service attack where the incoming IP addresses are all from Google and Amazon,” says Ragan. “That becomes a challenge. You can’t blacklist that whole IP range.”

I’m guessing after this a whole bunch of cloud providers might be adding additional security layers to their services to discourage this type of automated sign-up and botnet building activity, but then again a lot of the newer ones are concentrating on user growth – so adding barriers isn’t in their best interest.

We shall keep an eye on this and see if anyone else manages to take it any further.

Source: Wired

Posted in: Networking Hacking, Web Hacking

Topic: Networking Hacking, Web Hacking


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