Feeds

'Kill switch' flaw found in top web weapon, victims sigh with relief

Turn the tables on DDoSers

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Security researchers have discovered a vulnerability in a top DDoS attack tool that provides a handy means to neutralise onslaughts.

The Dirt Jumper Distributed-Denial-of-Service (DDoS) Toolkit is one of the most popular attack tools available. It was deployed in a digital siege against security news website KrebsonSecurity.com among many, many other victims in recent months. The weapon works by instructing an army of compromised computers to flood a website with traffic until legitimate visitors are unable to connect.

However a flaw in the software, uncovered by security researchers at DDoS mitigation specialists Prolexic, can be exploited to thwart assaults.

Armed with the identity of the C&C server or infected host, and open source penetration-testing tools, it is possible to gain access to the database in the system used to control the PC army and, more importantly, the server-side configuration files, Prolexic discovered.

“With this information, it is possible to access the C&C server and stop the attack,” explained Scott Hammack, chief executive officer at Prolexic.

“DDoS attackers take pride in finding and exploiting weaknesses in the architecture and code of their targets. With this vulnerability report, we’ve turned the tables and exposed crucial weaknesses in their own tools,” he added.

The Pandora DDoS toolkit, the latest member of the Dirt Jumper family, is also somewhat buggy.

Pandora can be used to launch five different attack types, including a combination of techniques against the web application and infrastructure layers of targeted websites. Typos in the malware result in broken GET requests. These mistakes are not bad enough to stop a network of compromised machines from launching the distributed attack, but they are severe enough to identify the zombie assailants.

A threat advisory from Prolexic explaining the bugs in both DDoS crimware tools can be found here. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
Heartbleed exploit, inoculation, both released
File under 'this is going to hurt you more than it hurts me'
Arts and crafts store Michaels says 3 million credit cards exposed in breach
Meanwhile, Target investigators prepare for long process in nabbing hackers
Canadian taxman says hundreds pierced by Heartbleed SSL skewer
900 social insurance numbers nicked, says revenue watchman
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.