Briefing on Recent US Bank Attacks and 2012 Attack Trends


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Presentation from SecureWorld: Boston that discusses Availability-based threats; Attacks on U.S. banks and others popular attack patterns & trends.

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  • -This pic is from the very beginning of the video, stating “There is an angry mob in the middle of the street”*Notes -  On September 9, 2012, an excerpt of the YouTube video was broadcast on Al-Nas TV, an Egyptian Islamist television station.[11][12]Demonstrations and violent protests against the film broke out on September 11 in Egypt and spread to other Arab and Muslim nations and some western countries.
  • -Libyan riots top left - riots bottom left -
  • Links about Izz as-Din al-Quassam The preacher - *Notes - The Levant includes most of modern Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, State of Palestine, Israel, Cyprus, Hatay Province of Turkey, some regions of northwestern Iraq and theSinai Peninsula.Links about the Cyber hacker group - from -
  • Links for translation of ababil - pic from - of Iranian involvement -
  • Data taken from internal doc.
  • Pic taken from -
  • -Taken from internal report.
  • -Taken from internal report.
  • Reflective attack - Attackers send forged requests of some type to a very large number of computers that will reply to the requests. Using spoofed SRC IP’s of the victim, which means all the replies will go to (and flood) the target.
  • -Stateful inspection in the DNS area is limited. Was in smartdefense at CP, but how many people use it?-The server is forced to respond with ICMP packets “Destination Unreachable” (ICMP type3 Code 3) for port closed when udp packet arrives.-Returning ICMP type 3 further saturate (Packet size in return will be close to received packet).
  • -Internal data.
  • -The SYN flood attack simply sends a high rate of SYN’s with spoofed IP’s and the server is left waiting for the ACK.-This means the attacker needs much fewer hosts to exhaust target machine because no session is actually kept alive on the “Attackers” side.-You exhaust the Backlog of the TCP stack (Linux default is 3mins and Win2k is 45 sec. for half open timeouts, these can be changed). So the server can no longer accept a new connection.-
  • -Another reported attack technique that was allegedly used during this campaign is a custom version of the Mobile LOIC tool (aka Mobile LOIC - Apache Killer) which is designed to exploit a known vulnerability in Apache servers – corresponding to CVE-2011-3192.-This attack tool targets Apache servers using Apache HTTP server versions 1.3.x, 2.0.x through 2.0.64, and 2.2.x through 2.2.19.
  • Target URL- Specifies the URL of the attacked target. Must start with http://. Requests per second-Specifies the number of desired requests to be sent per second. Append message-Specifies the content for the “msg” parameter to be sent within the URL of HTTP requests
  • Resource internal.
  • -This value is unique since it seems to contain a typo which is caused by placing the “User Agent:” string inside the user agent value itself.Resource internal.
  • Resource internal.
  • Resource internal.
  • Internal resources.
  • -Taken from Radware internal resources.
  • The image above shows how the agent controls the Botnet: The „Today‟ and „Online‟ shows the number of computers under its control, the „URLs‟ specify the URLs to be attacked, the „Flows‟ specify the attack vector and attack intensity, and the „Start‟ and „Stop‟ allows the agent to inflict pain and voluntarily stop it.
  • Identification: referrer (ask the audience)
  • Briefing on Recent US Bank Attacks and 2012 Attack Trends

    1. 1. Briefing on recent USbank attacks and2012 attack trendsDavid HobbsDirector of Security SolutionsEmergency Response TeamDavidH@Radware.comMarch 2013 Radware Confidential Jan 2012
    2. 2. AGENDA2012 Availability-based threatsAttacks on the us banksOthers 2012 popular attack patterns & trends
    3. 3. Radware ERT SurveyRadware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 3
    4. 4. 2012 Attack Motivation - ERT SurveyRadware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 4
    5. 5. 2012 Target Trend - ERT SurveyRadware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 5
    6. 6. Main Bottlenecks During DoS Attacks - ERT Survey Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 6
    7. 7. Attacks Campaigns DurationRadware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 7
    8. 8. Attack Duration Requires IT to Develop New SkillsWar Room Skills Are Required Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 8
    9. 9. Attacks Traverses CDNs (Dynamic Object Attacks) Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 9
    10. 10. AGENDA2012 Availability-based threatsAttacks on the us banksOthers 2012 popular attack patterns & trends
    11. 11. “Overview”• What triggered the recent US attacks?• Who was involved in implementing the attacks and name of the operation?• How long were the attacks and how many attack vectors were involved?• How the attacks work and their effects.• How can we prepare ourselves in the future? Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 11
    12. 12. “What triggered the attacks on the US banks?”• Nakoula Basseley Nakoula (Alias- “Sam Bacile”), an Egyption born US resident created an anti Islam film.• Early September the publication of the „Innocence of Muslims‟ film on YouTube invokes demonstrations throughout the Muslim world.• The video was 14 minutes though a full length movie was released. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 12
    13. 13. “Protests generated by the movie”Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 13
    14. 14. The Cyber Response Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 14
    15. 15. “Who is the group behind the cyber response?”• A hacker group called “Izz as-Din al-Qassam Cyber fighters”.• Izz as-Din al-Qassam was a famous Muslim preacher who was a leader in the fight against the French, US and Zionist in the 1920‟s and 1930‟s.• The group claims not to be affiliated to any government or Anonymous.• This group claims to be independent, and it‟s goal is to defend Islam. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 15
    16. 16. “Operation Ababil launched!”• “Operation Ababil” is the codename of the operation launched on Septembetr18th 2012, by the group “Izz as-Din al-Qassam Cyber fighters”• The attackers announced they would attack “American and Zionist targets”.• “Ababil” translates to “swallow” from Persian. Until today the US thinks the Iranian government may be behind the operation.• The operations goal is to have “Youtube” remove the anti-muslim film from it‟s site. Until today the video has not been removed. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 16
    17. 17. “The attack campaign in 2 phases”• The attack campaign was split into 2 phases, a pubic announcement was made in each phase.• The attacks lasted 10 days, from the 18th until the 28th of September.• Phase 1 - Targets > NYSE, BOA, JP Morgan.• Phase 2 – Targets > Wells Fargo, US Banks, PNC. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 17
    18. 18. The AttackVectors and Tactics! Slide 18
    19. 19. “Attack Vectors”• 5 Attack vectors were seen by the ERT team during Operation Ababil.1. UDP garbage flood.2. TCP SYN flood.3. Mobile LOIC (Apache killer version).4. HTTP Request flood.5. ICMP Reply flood. (*Unconfirmed but reported on).*Note: Data is gathered by Radware as well as it‟s partners. Radware Confidential Jan 2012
    20. 20. “UDP Garbage Flood”• Targeted the DNS servers of the organizations, also HTTP.• Up to 1Gbps volume (Possibly higher).• All attacks were identical in content and in size (Packet structure).• UDP packets sent to port 53 and 80.• Customer attacked Sep 18th and on the 19th. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 20
    21. 21. “Tactics used in the UDP garbage flood”• Internal DNS servers were targeted , at a high rate.• Web servers were also targeted, at a high rate.• Spoofed IP‟s (But kept to just a few, this is unusual).• ~ 1Gbps.• Lasted more than 7 hours initially but still continues... Packet structure Parameter Value Port 53 Value Port 80 Packet size 1358 Bytes Unknown Value in Garbage ‘A’ (0x41) characters “/http1” repeated (x2fx68x74x74x70x 31) - repetitive Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 21
    22. 22. “DNS Garbage flood packet extract”• Some reports of a DNS reflective attack was underway seem to be incorrect.• The packets are considered “Malformed” DNS packets, no relevant DNS header. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 22
    23. 23. “Attackers objective of the UDP Garbage flood”• Saturate bandwidth.• Attack will pass through firewall, since port is open.• Saturate session tables/CPU resources on any state -full device, L4 routing rules any router, FW session tables etc..• Returning ICMP type 3 further saturate upstream bandwidth.• All combined will lead to a DoS situation if bandwidth and infrastructure cannot handle the volume or packet processing. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 23
    24. 24. “TCP SYN flood”• Targeted Port 53, 80 and 443.• The rate was around 100Mbps with around 135K PPS.• This lasted from the Sep 18th for more than 3 days. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 24
    25. 25. “SYN flood Packet extract”-All sources are spoofed.-Multiple SYN packets to port 443. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 25
    26. 26. “Attackers objective of the TCP SYN floods”• SYN floods are a well known attack vector.• Can be used to distract from more targeted attacks.• The effect of the SYN flood if it slips through can devastate state-full devices quickly. This is done by filling up the session table.• All state-full device has some performance impact under such a flood.• Easy to implement.• Incorrect network architecture will quickly have issues. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 26
    27. 27. “Mobile LOIC (Apache killer version)”• Mobile LOIC (Low Orbit Iron Cannon) is a DDoS tool written in HTML and Javascript.• This DDoS Tool does an HTTP GET flood.• The tool is designed to do HTTP floods.• We have no statistics on the exact traffic of mobile LOIC. *Suspected *Suspected Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 27
    28. 28. “Mobile LOIC in a web browser”Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 28
    29. 29. “HTTP Request Flood”• Between 80K and 100K TPS (Transactions Per second)• Port 80• Followed the same patterns in the GET request (Except for the Input parameter)• Dynamic user agent Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 29
    30. 30. “HTTP flood packet structure”• Sources worldwide (True sources most likely hidden).• User agent duplicated.• Attack time was short (No confirmed timeline)• Rates are unknown.• Dynamic Input parameters. GET Requests parameters Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 30
    31. 31. “HTTP flood packet parameters identified” HTTP Request SamplesGET /financial-literacy/all-about-investing/etvs?2408bGET /financial-literacy/all-about-investing/bonds?4d094GET /inside-the-exchange/visiting?aad95GET / HTTP Request SamplesDoCoMo/2.0 SH902i (compatible; Y!J-SRD/1.0; ( (compatible; MSIE 8.0; Windows NT 5.1; Trident/4.0; .NET CLR 2.0.50727; .NET CLR1.1.4322;)Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.4b) Gecko/20030505 Mozilla Firebird/0.6Opera/9.00 (Windows NT 5.1; U; en)User-Agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1;)msnbot-Products/1.0 (+ Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 31
    32. 32. “Identified locations of attacking IP‟s”Worldwide! Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 32
    33. 33. “Attackers objective of the HTTP flood”• Bypass CDN services by randomizing the input parameter and user agents.• Because of the double user agent there was an flaw in the programming behind the attacking tool.• Saturating and exhausting web server resources by keeping session table and web server connection limits occupied.• The attack takes more resources to implement than non connection orientated attacks like TCP SYN floods and UDP garbage floods. This is because of the need to establish a connection. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 33
    34. 34. Unconfirmed Vectors of attack Slide 34
    35. 35. “Unconfirmed attacks”• The following 2 attack vectors were reported to us by our customers however we have no data internally to indicate these attacks took place.• The data was either gathered through intelligence the customer had (IRC chat, Forums etc..) or something they suspected and reported to Radware but never provided logs for.• The 2 other vectors suspected are: – ICMP Reply Flood. – Dirt Jumper. Radware Confidential Jan 2012
    36. 36. “ICMP Reply flood”• This attack was gathered through Cisco logs at the customers site.• We have no statistics on the attack. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 36
    37. 37. “ICMP Reply Flood explained”• ICMP “Requests” (ICMP Type 8) are sent to the target in order to generate multiple ICMP “Reply” (ICMP Type 0) packets.• This can also be from spoofed IP‟s (Sent packets, ICMP Type 8).• This saturates bandwidth on the servers up/down stream as well as CPU processing to process the ICMP packets and respond.• To do a replay flood you just spoof the SRC IP of the ICMP request. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 37
    38. 38. “Dirt Jumper”• Dirt Jumper is a BOT currently at version 5.• Dirt jumper is used in various HTTP floods.• POST, GET and download floods are supported by the latest version of Dirt Jumper.• User Agent and Referrer randomization are supported too. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 38
    39. 39. “Dirt Jumper C&C”Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 39
    40. 40. AGENDA2012 Availability-based threatsAttacks on the us banksOthers 2012 popular attack patterns & trends
    41. 41. Availability-based Threats Tree Availability- based Threats Network Floods Application Single-packet Low-and-Slow (Volumetric) Floods DoSICMP WebFlood DNS SMTP FloodUPDFlood HTTPS SYNFlood Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 41
    42. 42. Asymmetric AttacksRadware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 42
    43. 43. HTTP Reflection AttackAttacker Website A Website B (Victim) HTTP GET Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide
    44. 44. HTTP Reflection Attack Exampleiframe, width=1, height=1 search.php Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide
    45. 45. HTTPS – SSL Re Negotiation AttackTHC-SSL DoSTHC-SSL DOS was developed by a hacking group called The Hacker‟s Choice (THC), as a proof-of-concept to encourage vendors to patch a serious SSL vulnerability. THC-SSL-DOS, as with other“low and slow” attacks, requires only a small number of packets to cause denial-of-service for afairly large server. It works by initiating a regular SSL handshake and then immediately requestingfor the renegotiation of the encryption key, constantly repeating this server resource-intensiverenegotiation request until all server resources have been exhausted. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 45
    46. 46. Low & Slow Availability- based Threats Network Floods Application Single-packet Low-and-Slow (Volumetric) Floods DoSICMP WebFlood DNS SMTP FloodUPDFlood HTTPS SYNFlood Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 46
    47. 47. Low & Slow• Slowloris• Sockstress• R.U.D.Y.• Simultaneous Connection Saturation Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 47
    48. 48. R.U.D.Y (R-U-Dead-Yet)R.U.D.Y. (R-U-Dead-Yet?)R.U.D.Y. (R-U-Dead-Yet?) is a slow-rate HTTP POST (Layer 7) denial-of-service tool created by Raviv Raz andnamed after the Children of Bodom album “Are You Dead Yet?” It achieves denial-of-service by using long formfield submissions. By injecting one byte of information into an application POST field at a time and then waiting,R.U.D.Y. causes application threads to await the end of never-ending posts in order to perform processing (thisbehavior is necessary in order to allow web servers to support users with slower connections). Since R.U.D.Y.causes the target webserver to hang while waiting for the rest of an HTTP POST request, by initiatingsimultaneous connections to the server the attacker is ultimately able to exhaust the server‟s connection table andcreate a denial-of-service condition. Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 48
    49. 49. SlowlorisSlowlorisSlowloris is a denial-of-service (DoS) tool developed by the grey hat hacker “RSnake” that causes DoS by using a very slowHTTP request. By sending HTTP headers to the target site in tiny chunks as slow as possible (waiting to send the next tinychunk until just before the server would time out the request), the server is forced to continue to wait for the headers toarrive. If enough connections are opened to the server in this fashion, it is quickly unable to handle legitimate requests.Slowloris is cross-platform, except due to Windows’ ~130 simultaneous socket use limit, it is only effective from UNIX-basedsystems which allow for more connections to be opened in parallel to a target server (although a GUI Python version ofSlowloris dubbed PyLoris was able to overcome this limiting factor on Windows). Radware Confidential Jan 2012 Slide 49
    50. 50. Radware Security Products PortfolioDefenseProNetwork & Server attack prevention deviceAppWallWeb Application Firewall (WAF)APSolute VisionManagement and security reporting &compliance Slide 50
    51. 51. Thank Radware Confidential Jan 2012