Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Perimeter

6/22/2009
04:37 PM
John H. Sawyer
John H. Sawyer
Commentary
50%
50%

Maltego: Going On The Offensive *And* Defensive To Defend Against Social Networks

You know the military's ol' mantra about "loose lips sink ships"? Well, it's being redefined by sites like Twitter, Flickr, and Facebook, according to a great article from Federal Computer Week that discusses the threats social networks pose to operational security.

You know the military's ol' mantra about "loose lips sink ships"? Well, it's being redefined by sites like Twitter, Flickr, and Facebook, according to a great article from Federal Computer Week that discusses the threats social networks pose to operational security.The premise behind the article -- a perfect follow-up to my post from last Friday about the potential for data leaks from nontraditional networks -- is that attackers can learn information about their targets from all of the different social networks.

I've written about the threats from social network sites before, but I think having it brought forth by a Defense Intelligence Agency operational security analyst helps put in perspective the seriousness of the threat. Providing such information as your favorite books, sports teams, and commonly frequented coffee shops, for example, can all be used by an attacker to social engineer the target (that means you). That information can also provide clues to gain access to your accounts through guessing passwords or answering password reset questions.

One tool I'm now using regularly is Paterva's Maltego, which helps penetration testers gather the same sort of information from social networking sites, figure out connections between e-mail addresses and personal identities, identify additional sites hosted by a particular IP, and much more. The ease with which you can dig deep into a Website, identity, e-mail address, IP address, and domain name is awesome.

I've always thought of Maltego from an offensive perspective, but its defensive uses can be quite useful for companies concerned about employees divulging too much information, too. For example, the FCW article linked above details an excellent hypothetical scenario in which a person is targeted using information found in his LinkedIn profile and resume. The same could happen to employees throughout your company as a way to see what sorts of information might be floating around just waiting to be used against you.

Wondering if this might be something to try out with your company? Here is a free community edition of Maltego that you can take for test drive. Take a look -- you never know what you might find.

John H. Sawyer is a senior security engineer on the IT Security Team at the University of Florida. The views and opinions expressed in this blog are his own and do not represent the views and opinions of the UF IT Security Team or the University of Florida. When John's not fighting flaming, malware-infested machines or performing autopsies on blitzed boxes, he can usually be found hanging with his family, bouncing a baby on one knee and balancing a laptop on the other. Special to Dark Reading.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Commentary
How SolarWinds Busted Up Our Assumptions About Code Signing
Dr. Jethro Beekman, Technical Director,  3/3/2021
News
'ObliqueRAT' Now Hides Behind Images on Compromised Websites
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  3/2/2021
News
Attackers Turn Struggling Software Projects Into Trojan Horses
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  2/26/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2021-28026
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
jpeg-xl v0.3.2 is affected by a heap buffer overflow in /lib/jxl/coeff_order.cc ReadPermutation. When decoding a malicous jxl file using djxl, an attacker can trigger arbitrary code execution or a denial of service.
CVE-2021-27907
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
Apache Superset up to and including 0.38.0 allowed the creation of a Markdown component on a Dashboard page for describing chart's related information. Abusing this functionality, a malicious user could inject javascript code executing unwanted action in the context of the user's browser. The javasc...
CVE-2021-20663
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
Cross-site scripting vulnerability in in Role authority setting screen of Movable Type 7 r.4705 and earlier (Movable Type 7 Series), Movable Type Advanced 7 r.4705 and earlier (Movable Type Advanced 7 Series), Movable Type 6.7.5 and earlier (Movable Type 6.7 Series), Movable Type Premium 1.39 and ea...
CVE-2021-20664
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
Cross-site scripting vulnerability in in Asset registration screen of Movable Type 7 r.4705 and earlier (Movable Type 7 Series), Movable Type Advanced 7 r.4705 and earlier (Movable Type Advanced 7 Series), Movable Type 6.7.5 and earlier (Movable Type 6.7 Series), Movable Type Premium 1.39 and earlie...
CVE-2021-20665
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-05
Cross-site scripting vulnerability in in Add asset screen of Contents field of Movable Type 7 r.4705 and earlier (Movable Type 7 Series), Movable Type Advanced 7 r.4705 and earlier (Movable Type Advanced 7 Series), Movable Type Premium 1.39 and earlier, and Movable Type Premium Advanced 1.39 and ear...