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PoizonBOx hacks past security firm's ‘honey pot’

Leaves sticky stuff on face of Kiwi security specialists

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New Zealand security firm Co-Logic has become one of the latest victims of prolific hacking group PoizonBOx.

In order to monitor hacker activity the security assessment firm had set up a "honey pot" server, a poorly protected section of its Web infrastructure that contained no real data and was designed purely to log the activity of crackers.

However after hacking into this site, PoizonBOx was able to break into the firm's genuine systems, IDG reports. The defacement has been recorded by Alldas.de and can be seen here.

Paul Rogers, network security analyst at MIS Corporate Defence, said there were a number of unanswered questions about the attack, particularly how the hackers were reportedly able to leapfrog from decoy to real systems.

"Honey pot systems servers should be set up on a separate network segment with no access back to admin systems," said Rogers. "Such systems need to be constantly monitored by systems admins, who should receive alerts when they are compromised."

"If you're doing something to tempt hackers to inspect systems then need to have the right policies and procedures in place. Otherwise you're playing with a hot potato," he added.

The vulnerability to the Co-logic site (e-secure-it.co.nz) came about because of an incomplete un-installation of FrontPage 98, which left the site open to FrontPage extension vulnerability. To make matters worse after PoizonBOx ran rings around the firm's security, another hacker group opposed to PoizonBOx reported redefaced the site.

Co-Logic founder Arjen de Landgraaf tried to put a brave face on the security breach.

"In a sense it is embarrassing, but as a result we discovered a new vulnerability we weren't aware of," de Landgraaf told IDG.

Over the last month, PoizonBOx has engaged in a prolific defacement spree which has seen the Web sites belonging to the foreign subsidiaries of IT firms (such as Samsung and Acer) and the sites of household names, such as Ford and Sony Music, falling victim to defacement.

MIS' Rogers said PoizonBOx was likely using automatic vulnerability scanning and defacement tools, which are easily available in the digital underground.

There's no sign that the hacking attacks will let up so users were urged to bolt up their security hatches, or else risk becoming victims of defacements themselves. ®

External links:
Security specialist succumbs to hackers
A record of PoizonBOX's defacement spree from Alldas.de

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

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