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02 January 2012

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Footprinting and Port Scanning- Overview


FootprintingFootprinting is the technique of gathering some information about the computer systems and the entities they belong to. This can be done by employing various computer security techniques such as network/DNS queries, port scanning, OS identification, ping services, WWW spiders and WHOIS information etc.. Some of the widely used tools for footprinting are Telnet, NslookUp, Ping, Tracert, Netstat etc. For more information about that tools, please click here.

Steps needed to do it-

1. First the hacker will start collecting information about the targeting domain which includes IP address, Registry information, website owner and contact information etc. through WHOIS tools.

2. Next the hacker would Ping the server to see if it is up and running because it is difficult to hack the offline server. For ex- www.downornot.com, www.just-ping.com are the websites which pings a website server from different locations of the world.

3. Now the hacker would search its pages and directory via Google search engine for some security loopholes.

Port Scanning

Do you know friends that Port scanning is usually do to find and search open and closed ports of a website. Thus, if a hacker finds any open port, he/she would start looking for vulnerabilities and exploit them to control the website. For ex- Nmap is one of the popular software’s in port scanning and available for both windows and MAC users. You can download it from http://nmap.org/download.html .

After installing it, type your victims website in the target section, hit Intense scan and type command as-

nmap -T Aggressive -A -v www.victims-website.com and then scan for all the ports.

For ex- You will find open port like this- 80/tcp on 192.168.1.110 . Now once you have founded open ports, just exploit them. Hence to do this, Banner Grabbing comes into play. Banner grabbing is a technique or attack used by a hacker which will tell the hacker what type of operating system an application is running under and the version of the operating system installed. We will learn more about it in upcoming posts. So stay tuned.

Countermeasures

Learn How to Close open ports for safety !
Choose Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Administrative Tools. Select Services. Scroll down in the list until you see the name of the service you want to close. Select it, change the start-up type to "Disabled," and click "Stop" to stop the service. Try to know what you're doing there, because you could stop services required to keep your machine running.

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