Web Spoofing Secrets Revealed

Web spoofing is one of the popular hacking technique existed in world wide web. There are many cases reported about web spoofing through emails or through fraud sites. Look out some of the secrets behind this technique:

INTRODUCTION

This paper describes an Internet security attack that could endanger the privacy of World Wide Web users and the integrity of their data. The attack can be carried out on today’s systems, endangering users of the most common Web browsers, including Netscape Navigator and Microsoft Internet Explorer.

HISTORY

The concept of IP spoofing was initially discussed in academic circles in the 1980’s. It was primarily theoretical until Robert Morris, whose son wrote the first Internet Worm, discovered a security weakness in the TCP protocol known as sequence prediction. Another infamous attack, Kevin Mitnick’s Christmas day, crack of Tsutomu Shimomura’s machine, employed the IP spoofing and TCP sequence prediction techniques. While the popularity of such cracks has decreased due to the demise of the services they exploited, spoofing can still be used and needs to be addressed by all security administrators.

WHAT IS SPOOFING?

Spoofing means pretending to be something you are not.? In Internet terms, it means pretending to be a different Internet address from the one you really have in order to gain something.?? That might be information like credit card numbers, passwords, personal information or the ability to carry out actions using someone else’s identity.

IP spoofing attack involves forging one’s source address. It is the act of using one machine to impersonate another. Most of the applications and tools in web rely on the source IP address authentication. Many developers have used the host-based access controls to secure their networks. Source IP address is a unique identifier but not a reliable one. It can easily be spoofed.

Web spoofing allows an attacker to create a “shadow copy” of the entire World Wide Web. Accesses to the shadow Web are funneled through the attacker’s machine, allowing the attacker to monitor the all of the victim’s activities including any passwords or account numbers the victim enters. The attacker can also cause false or misleading data to be sent to Web servers in the victim’s name, or to the victim in the name of any Web server. In short, the attacker observes and controls everything the victim does on the Web.

The various types of spoofing techniques that we discuss include TCP Flooding, DNS Server Spoofing Attempts, website names, email ids and link redirection.

WEB SPOOFING

INTRODUCTION

Web spoofing allows an attacker to create a “shadow copy” of the entire World Wide Web. Accesses to the shadow Web are funneled through the attacker’s machine, allowing the attacker to monitor the all of the victim’s activities including any passwords or account numbers the victim enters. The attacker can also cause false or misleading data to be sent to Web servers in the victim’s name, or to the victim in the name of any Web server. In short, the attacker observes and controls everything the victim does on the Web.

SPOOFING ATTACKS

In a spoofing attack, the attacker creates a misleading context in order to trick the victim into making an inappropriate security-relevant decision. A spoofing attack is like a con game: the attacker sets up a false but convincing world around the victim. The victim does something that would be appropriate if the false world were real. Unfortunately, activities that seem reasonable in the false world may have disastrous effects in the real world.

Spoofing attacks are possible in the physical world as well as the electronic one. For example, there have been several incidents in which criminals set up bogus automated-teller machines, typically in the public areas of shopping malls. The machines would accept ATM cards and ask the person to enter their PIN code. Once the machine had the victim’s PIN, it could either eat the card or “malfunction” and return the card. In either case, the criminals had enough information to copy the victim’s card and use the duplicate. In these attacks, people were fooled by the context they saw: the location of the machines, their size and weight, the way they were decorated, and the appearance of their electronic displays.

People using computer systems often make security-relevant decisions based on contextual cues they see. For example, one might decide to type in your bank account number because he/she believes you are visiting your bank’s Web page. This belief might arise because the page has a familiar look because the bank’s URL appears in the browser’s location line, or for some other reason.

WEB SPOOFING

Web spoofing is a kind of electronic con game in which the attacker creates a convincing but false copy of the entire World Wide Web. The false Web looks just like the real one: it has all the same pages and links. However, the attacker controls the false Web, so that all network traffic between the victim’s browser and the Web goes through the attacker.

Consequences Since the attacker can observe or modify any data going from the victim to Web servers, as well as controlling all return traffic from Web servers to the victim, the attacker has many possibilities. These include surveillance and tampering.

Surveillance The attacker can passively watch the traffic, recording which pages the victim visits and the contents of those pages. When the victim fills out a form, the entered data is transmitted to a Web server, so the attacker can record that too, along with the response sent back by the server. Since most on-line commerce is done via forms, this means the attacker can observe any account numbers or passwords the victim enters.

The attacker can carry out surveillance even if the victim has a “secure” connection (usually via Secure Sockets Layer) to the server, that is, even if the victim’s browser shows the secure connection icon (usually an image of a lock or a key).

Tampering The attacker is also free to modify any of the data traveling in either direction between the victim and the Web. The attacker can modify form data submitted by the victim. For example, if the victim is ordering a product on-line, the attacker can change the product number, the quantity, or the ship-to address.
The attacker can also modify the data returned by a Web server, for example by inserting misleading or offensive material in order to trick the victim or to cause antagonism between the victim and the server.

Spoofing the Whole Web

You may think it is difficult for the attacker to spoof the entire World Wide Web, but it is not. The attacker need not store the entire contents of the Web. The whole Web is available on-line; the attacker’s server can just fetch a page from the real Web when it needs to provide a copy of the page on the false Web.

How the Attack Works:

The key to this attack is for the attacker’s Web server to sit between the victim and the rest of the Web. This kind of arrangement is called a “man in the middle attack” in the security literature.

URL Rewriting:

The attacker’s first trick is to rewrite all of the URLs on some Web page so that they point to the attacker’s server rather than to some real server. Assuming the attacker’s server is on the machine http://www.webmasters-forums.com, the attacker rewrites an URL by adding http://www.webmasters-forums.com to the front of the URL. For
example, http://home.netscape.com becomes http://www.webmasters-forums.com/http://…cape.com.? ?

The victim’s browser requests the page from http://www.webmasters-forums.com, since the URL starts with http://www.webmasters-forums.com. The remainder of the URL tells the attacker’s server where on the Web to go to get the real document.
Once the attacker’s server has fetched the real document needed to satisfy the request, the attacker rewrites all of the URLs in the document into the same special form by splicing http://www.webmasters-forums.com/ onto the front. Then the attacker’s server provides the rewritten page to the victim’s browser.

Since all of the URLs in the rewritten page now point to http://www.attacker.org, if the victim follows a link on the new page, the page will again be fetched through the attacker’s server. The victim remains trapped in the attacker’s false Web, and can follow links forever without leaving it.


Forms:

If the victim fills out a form on a page in a false Web, the result appears to be handled properly. Spoofing of forms works naturally because forms are integrated closely into the basic Web protocols: form submissions are encoded in URLs and the replies are ordinary HTML. Since any URL can be spoofed, forms can also be spoofed.

When the victim submits a form, the submitted data goes to the attacker’s server. The attacker’s server can observe and even modify the submitted data, doing whatever malicious editing desired, before passing it on to the real server. The attacker’s server can also modify the data returned in response to the form submission.

“Secure” connections don’t help:

One distressing property of this attack is that it works even when the victim requests a page via a “secure” connection. If the victim does a “secure” Web access (a Web access using the Secure Sockets Layer) in a false Web, everything will appear normal: the page will be delivered, and the secure connection indicator (usually an image of a lock or key) will be turned on.
What is SSL?

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer. This protocol, designed by Netscape Communications Corp., is used to send encrypted HTTP (Web) transactions.

Seeing “https” in the URL box on your browser means SSL is being used to encrypt data as it travels from your browser to the server. This helps protect sensitive information–social security and credit card numbers, bank account balances, and other personal information–as it is sent.
The victim’s browser says it has a secure connection because it does have one. Unfortunately, the secure connection is to http://www.attacker.org and not to the place the victim thinks it is. The victim’s browser thinks everything is fine: it was told to access a URL at http://www.attacker.org so it made a secure connection to http://www.attacker.org. The secure connection indicator only gives the victim a false sense of security.

Starting the Attack:

To start an attack, the attacker must somehow lure the victim into the attacker’s false Web. There are several ways to do this.

1) An attacker could put a link to a false Web onto a popular Web page.
2) If the victim is using Web-enabled email, the attacker could email the victim a pointer to a false Web, or even the contents of a page in a false Web.
3) Finally, the attacker could trick a Web search engine into indexing part of a false Web.

An example from real life:

As web surfers and users, we must always be wary of the content of the web pages we surf, look for clues to spoofing, and report immediately to the providers. NEVER click on the link provided to you in an e-mail from someone you don’t know or trust.

This is a very easy way to get you to that Hacker Intercept site! As an example, let’s say you get the following e-mail from someone claiming to know you.

Hi Johnny,
I found this new book on gardening on Amazon and I thought you would enjoy it. Check it out…
Square Foot Gardening Mel Bartholome
Love,
Mom
Close inspection of the link above provides the following:
http://www.amazone.com/exec/obidos/searc…99-0468854

The link points to amazone.com instead of amazon.com. Everything else in the link is genuine. So before buying this great new book recommended by Mom, you’ll be stopping by and visiting the folks at amazone.com and giving them your credit card number, expiration date, name, address, and phone.

To read more, Visit: http://webmasters-forums.com/web-spoofing-t-402.html

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