Category: Privacy Attacks

Feb 28 2014

Tor to Release Instant Messaging Bundle (TIMB)

Tor Instant Messaging BundleThe TOR project is about to join the world of secure instant messaging, laying out a roadmap that would see its first code for a new project delivered by the end of March 2014.

The first aim of the Tor Instant Messaging Bundle will be to get experimental builds happening with Instantbird providing the messaging interface.

As explained, Instantbird was considered to be the best of the three messaging platforms considered by the TOR people. Pidgin/libpurple and xmpp-client were also looked at but didn’t make the cut.

The developers’ “mild preference” for Instantbird is tempered by a couple of open questions. One is what attack profile it presents to the outside world; the other, its OTR support, is being addressed by the TOR developers. Libpurple, which is currenly an Instantbird dependency, is being removed.

As this document notes, the group also plans to have the Tor Instant Messaging Bundle audited so “people in countries where communication for the purpose of activism is met with intimidation, violence, and prosecution will be able to avoid the scrutiny of criminal cartels, corrupt officials, and authoritarian governments.”

With Facebook’s recent US$16bn takeover of the messaging service that has more than 450m monthly users, some of the more worried corners of the online communities have questioned the move and whether this will mean their messages will become more susceptible to being monitored, something Facebook has been accused of in the past.

That is why Tor has timed its announcement perfectly!

Oct 21 2013

Facebook Data Mining Tool Uncovers Your Life

You know you shouldn’t post potentially damaging data on Facebook, but more often that not, your friends don’t think twice about it, and this can impact you even more than you think. At the Hack In The Box conference in Kuala Lumpur, security consultants Keith Lee and Jonathan Werrett from SpiderLabs revealed how a simple tool can enable anyone to find a comprehensive amount of data on any user.

Facebook Data Mining
Keith Lee and Jonathan Werrett during their presentation

To get the information, they created the aptly named FBStalker. This tool reverse-engineers the Facebook Graph and can find information on almost anyone. You don’t have to be a friend with someone on the network – the only thing that FBStalker needs to work is for parts of your posts to be marked as public. The tool will find things based on photos you’ve been tagged in, the comments you’ve put on other people’s posts, the things that you like, etc.

If you are tagged in a photo, we can assume you know the people you’re in the photo with. If you comment on a post, FBStalker knows there’s an association. Most people have an open friends list and this gives the tool a variety of people to target for more information. By looking at their posts and your interactions with them, it’s possible to understand how some of those people are important in your life.

Even though many users don’t use the Check-In function, it’s still possible to determine their favorite places to hang-out based on the tagged photos and posts from their friends. Just imagine the level of detail you can achieve and how that can help you if you want to mount a targeted social engineering attack against the user.

The first thing that came to mind when I learned about this tool was to ask if it’s a violation of Facebook’s terms of service. Werrett was expecting the question, he says with a smile: “The tool is basically automating what the user can do in the browser. We’re not using any APIs or unofficial ways of interacting with the interface. We’re using Graph Search to build-up this profile.”

FBStalker goes also a step further and provides private information about the targeted user that might not be obvious to others. It allows you to analyze the time when the person is online and, with time you are able to guess their sleep patterns and active hours.

This type of tool works well if you haven’t locked down your profile, but it can still work even if you have, provided that your friends haven’t locked down their profiles. You know the old saying – the chain is only as strong as its weakest link. With Facebook’s recent announcement that they are removing a privacy feature and that every user is going to be discoverable by name, things are getting increasingly harder to hide.

Even if your account is locked down, you can’t mark your profile picture as private. Once you change it and people like the picture, the attacker can start building a view of your friends list.

What can you do to protect yourself? The authors have a few suggestions: turn off location tracking and tighten your Facebook privacy settings. However, with the social networking giant increasingly removing privacy options, you may have trouble staying hidden.

Jul 05 2012

Android Clickjacking Rootkit Demonstrated

ClickJackingA team of security researchers have demonstrated how a security flaw in Android 4.0.4 can be exploited by a clickjacking rootkit.

The research team is lead by North Carolina State University professor Xuxian Jiang, who succeeded in developing a proof-of-concept rootkit that attacks the Android framework as opposed to the underlying operating system kernel. The researchers contend that such a rootkit could potentially be downloaded with an infected app and be used to manipulate the smartphone.

In the video, the demonstrator was able to hide applications on the device, as well as get them to launch when icons for other applications are clicked. If downloaded with an infected application, the rootkit could for example hide the smartphone’s browser and replace it with a browser that looks exactly the same but actually steals all of the user’s information.

Jan 27 2012

theHarvester – Information Gathering Tool

The HarvestertheHarvester is a tool for gathering e-mail accounts, user names and hostnames/subdomains from different public sources like search engines and PGP key servers.

This tools is intended to help Penetration testers in the early stages of the project It’s a really simple tool, but very effective.

The sources supported are:
– Google – emails,subdomains/hostnames
– Google profiles – Employee names
– Bing search – emails, subdomains/hostnames,virtual hosts
– Pgp servers – emails, subdomains/hostnames
– Linkedin – Employee names
– Exalead – emails,subdomain/hostnames

New features:
– Time delays between requests
– XML and HTML results export
– Search a domain in all sources
– Virtual host verifier
– Shodan computer database integration
– Active enumeration (DNS enumeration,DNS reverse lookups, DNS TLD expansion)
– Basic graph with stats

Some Examples:
Searching emails accounts for the domain microsoft.com, it will work with the first 500 google results:

./theharvester.py -d microsoft.com -l 500 -b google

Searching emails accounts for the domain microsoft.com in a PGP server, here it’s not necessary to specify the limit.

./theharvester.py -d microsoft.com -b pgp

Searching for user names that works in the company microsoft, we use google as search engine, so we need to specify the limit of results we want to use:

./theharvester.py -d microsoft.com -l 200 -b linkedin

Searching in all sources at the same time, with a limit of 200 results:

./theHarvester.py -d microsoft.com -l 200 -b all

Download: https://code.google.com/p/theharvester

Jan 19 2012

Hacker Publishes Waves of Facebook Logins

Facebook Passwords LeakedA hacker who calls himself Hannibal has posted thousands of alleged login email addresses and passwords of Arab Facebook users.

Emails and passwords for the social network Facebook have been published on Pastebin. Hannibal claims he has more than 30 million credentials of Arab users that he will publish regularly.

The hacker backs Israel and said, “State of Israel, not to worry, you’re in the hands of the world’s best hacker that I am. I will continue to support the government of Israel will continue to attack the Arab countries.”

In addition to the Facebook details he claims that he has possession of 10 million bank accounts and four million credit card details, which he warns he will publish if Iran continues to threaten Israel.

The most recent post said, “Unfortunately today I received an email from Mohammad Reza Rahimi [an Iranian politician] who threatens that would raise most of his men to find me and kill me. I assure you Mr. Fool, you can keep looking as you want, you will not find me even if you have a staff of 1,000 people who search for and carry out search for information about me.”

A spokesman for Facebook said, “This does not represent a hack of Facebook or anyone’s Facebook profiles. We have spent time investigating the information and have determined less than a third of the credentials were valid and almost half weren’t associated with Facebook accounts.”

“Additionally, we have built robust internal systems that validate every single login to our site, regardless if the password is correct or not, to check for malicious activity. By analysing every single login to the site we have added a layer of security that protects our users from threats both known and unknown. Beyond our engineering teams that build tools to block malicious activity, we also have a dedicated enforcement team that seeks to identify those responsible for threats and works with our legal team to ensure appropriate consequences follow.”