Part of performing an effective and successful penetration test requires gathering as much information about the target as possible. The more information you have on your target, the more likely you are to discover an exploitable service or land a successful phish.
For example, through OSINT you may discover that the target is openly advertising a job position, and invites applicants to send a resume through to HR. You craft a document using template injection to pull a C2 beacon from one of your C2 domains and can achieve a foothold on the internal domain by mimicking a job applicant.
Without effective recon, it is likely that this opportunity may be missed resulting in an extended period attempting to gain an internal foothold.
So how do you go about effective OSINT/recon?
While breach data may not always contain information on your target, or even recent or up-to-date passwords, it can provide valuable information.
For example, it can give an idea of if users practice sensible account hygiene and register for non-work websites using work email addresses. It can also provide an indication of how users structure their passwords. While “Mary1987” may not be the most recent password, it indicates password format in the form of “NameYear” may be suitable for password spraying.
Social media is a good place to identify employees at your target. LinkedIn generally provides a solid list of employee names, along with job titles that can help you land a juicy phish.
Social media can also be useful for determining what relationships a business might have with other companies in the same industry that could be exploited, or what technology might be in use that may need to be avoided when you gain an internal foothold.
DNS records can also reveal a large amount of information regarding potential targets and remote entry points such as VPN or RDP gateways. In addition, with a lot of organisations moving to cloud platforms it can also help identify issues such as subdomain takeovers (they still very much exist in 2021!)
One thing you should be wary of with DNS is that it can be noisy if you start querying the organisations DNS servers directly, so depending on how stealthy you need to be, this may need to be done via historical DNS records and/or certificate transparency lookups.
A number of tools exist that can automate some of this reconnaissance. During a time-limited penetration test these can be quite valuable, as they allow you to work on other tasks while the information is gathered.
The Conti group have been featured across many news outlets lately both inside and outside the cyber security community. It is well known that this specific threat actor is mainly operated from within Russia, and with the recent events within Russia and Ukraine we thought it would be a good idea to do a recap […]Read More
Modern environments are in a constant state of flux; new systems are being commissioned, and old systems decommissioned, to meet new requirements and increase efficiency in all sectors. Managing those changes takes strategy and labour, and every change has an overhead in both of those resources. What do you do when your users want new […]Read More
Part of performing an effective and successful penetration test requires gathering as much information about the target as possible. The more information you have on your target, the more likely you are to discover an exploitable service or land a successful phish. For example, through OSINT you may discover that the target is openly advertising […]Read More
Recently in the news it was revealed that a member of an “APT” group that utilises the “Conti” ransomware became disgruntled at the state of their relationship with the group and leaked a large majority of the groups “Tools, Techniques and Procedures” documents. Conti was first discovered in 2020 and is used primarily by the […]Read More
Advanced persistent threats come in many forms ranging from your crime groups, activists all the way through to your state sponsored groups. While some of these threat actors such as crime groups are seen on a regular (if not daily..) basis, state sponsored attacks are less common and more sophisticated. While most state sponsored groups […]Read More
The Windows Name Resolution Flow You may be under the impression that turning host names into IP addresses is simple. You check: The Hosts file; then Your system’s DNS (Domain Name System) resolver That’s it right? If you don’t get a response from your local file or DNS, then the system doesn’t exist. Well, no; the name resolution flow in Windows looks something like this: Well, that’s a […]Read More
Red teaming is not a new concept within the cyber security community. However in Australia, Red Teaming is a relatively new term for most organisations. In this blog post we'll take a dive into: What differentiates a Red Team engagement from a Penetration Test. Why you shouldn't consider a red team engagement (You totally should.) […]Read More
When adding a “Password Reset” function to your application it is especially important to ensure this has the same security considerations as any other critical function within the application. Due to the nature of resetting a user’s password, along with many security considerations being overlooked, it is not uncommon for attackers to spend extra time […]Read More