Hacking [it does happen]

  spikeychris 11:29 06 Dec 2003

Couple of days ago Powerless posted that he was turning off his firewall and invited me to hack him, admittedly I only got as far as his computer name. This I think is because his ISP prevents the actions I was trying.

The tools I was using are inbuilt into Windows (all versions) its not rocket science its just a few DOS commands and your at the door..a few more and your in. A firewall prevents the casual hack, IE, port scanning with a batch file but will not stop a determined hacker.

It seems though that computer users (here and elsewhere) think that hacking doesn't go on, its made up and exaggerated, well it does..a lot.

Obviously I've no intention of typing the ways and means but if you have netbios enabled and you use file and printer sharing on a shared drive your machine will be shouting out its name on the net, all it takes is sniffer to find it and their in. A shared drive announces to the net that it has a hexadecimal value of 20> thats all they need.

The Windows tools used by hackers are *old*, as in DOS and they have refined and tweaked them to a state of once they gain entry they can use a GUI to see whats happening.

Firewalls hide these ports from the Internet so make life harder for script kiddies and nOObs (beginners name for learning hackers) but even then your not ultra safe. You can see whats happening on your own machine by opening a command prompt and using the netstat -a command.

Yeah but how do they get my IP address? thats the easiest bit of the entire hack, a batch file run for 15 minutes will bring up a shed load of IP's for the hacker to have a play with.

If you have NETBIOS disabled and your not sharing a drive and file and printer sharing is switched off then its almost impossible to hack with Windows tools but third party tools can overcome even that.

A proper configured firewall should not cause anyone any grief and surely makes sense.

Not a run to the hills post just a heads up.


  [email protected]@m 11:43 06 Dec 2003

Thanks for the insight.

  billyliv 11:57 06 Dec 2003

Hi spikeychris, Interesting post. I run three computers on NTL broadband behind a 'D Link' DI- 604 Ethernet router. Would a hacker be able to get past the router IP Address?. Cheers, Bill

  Taran 11:59 06 Dec 2003

Domestic computers are not the attractive hacker targets many people might think they are, but with more systems linking onto broadband connections the risks increase accordingly.

It's pretty obvious that higher profile targets offer greater rewards, but domestic computers on a fast connection are a nice point to take control over and use as a remote systems to atack from. Get a few such remotes workng for you and you have the basis for a strong, concerted attack on a particular target.

In very general terms the chances of it happening are slim, but it can and it does.

My server logs at work indicate some pretty determined attacks but then this is on a very fast connection which is almost permanently live, so it's a comparatively more attractive target than any dial up user.

I will agree that all the hype about software firewalls may not be a reflection of reality, but domestic hacking does go on and it is one of the ways in which script kiddies 'progress' up the ladder by targetting systems whose only records of attack will be held by an ISP instead of on a company web or network server log.

  spikeychris 12:22 06 Dec 2003

Routers are a different kettle of fish, its a lot harder for a hacker to bypass one. There is though flaws in Windows "Winsock", called "NetBios Echo".

As Taran has said theres not much mileage in hacking a home PC but the run of the mill script kiddie is only interested in the chase and the thrill of actually doing it. They don't want to steal or add anything..they just want to be there.

Some though just like the "changing rooms" effect, move this and destroy that.

Just to reiterate this is not a panic thread just a "if there free.....use 'em"

  powerless 12:35 06 Dec 2003

Theres nothing like a bit of debate after i said i was not going to run a firewall on my PC.

But its all good.

  obbit 14:11 06 Dec 2003

i am very sure i know what happens on my pc. zone alarm tells me. or does it?
should i block all internet access until asked if programs need access? that way knowing what and when is happening.

i have taken all the advice that is stated on PCA from all the threads, but it would seem that hackers still get into the pc, if they want too.

click here
thanks to 961 for that one. my pc passed all tests.

  recap 14:23 06 Dec 2003

Once I have sorted out the problems at work I will be installing BB from NTL. We have an Internet Server that is from a company called iNTY. They have an excellent firwall, but, I am considering running a FEBE (Front End Back End) firewall system.

If I go down this route I understand that the risk of being hacked are greatly reduced?

Any comments on this type of setup.

  Forum Editor 14:29 06 Dec 2003

but the chances of it happening are remote - so remote that in the past year I haven't had a single instance of it happening to any of my private clients. I'm not suggesting for a moment that everyone should drop their shields and invite the world in, but let's keep a sense of balance.

In my experience there's an enormous amount of paranoia in the general online population when it comes to security, and this is periodically fuelled by dramatic rumours about people losing the contents of their hard drives etc. All it takes is one new hacker report and my mailbox fills within a day - everyone asking if there's anything they can do to prevent their computer from being the next victim. At any one time there will be tens of millions of machines online, and probably a few thousand serious hackers. Remember those TV nature films that show vast shoals of tiny fish? When they shoal like that the chances of a single fish being targeted by a predator is dramatically reduced. The same principle applies to you when you're online.

A couple of years ago none of us ran personal firewalls - they were the preserve of the network administrators. Now we all have them, but the incidence of machine hacks hasn't reduced - because a real hacker will walk straight through almost every one. In my business life I'm sometimes asked to do vulnerability tests on network servers for clients, and this involves using the same tools that hackers use. I can be through all the commonly used firewalls in minutes with these tools plus a little knowledge, but network servers with hardware firewalls are a different kettle of digits.

By all means protect yourself with a firewall - it does no harm (bar using machine resources and slowing you slightly), and it can provide some peace of mind. It won't keep a real hacker out, but then you are never likely to attract the attention of one of them anyway.

Maybe we need to relax, and stop fretting quite so much - there are worse things to worry about, and they're called viruses. Concentrate on keeping your anti-virus software up to date and you'll have little to worry about.

  spikeychris 15:15 06 Dec 2003

Some interesting analogies there, reminds me of Eric Cantona "When seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think that sardines will be thrown into the sea."

Not wishing to increase the shares of firewalls but I do believe that it occurs more than people think. People are getting more and more savvy and are "experimenting". A couple of years ago FW's were only used on networks but as said computer users know a hell of a lot more now than they did then.

"you are never likely to attract the attention of one of them anyway." have to disagree, batch files don't care whose IP they acquire. Obviously the lower the IP the bigger bandwith it offers and some networks *fake* their IP to look less inviting.

Thread is in response to a thread earlier stating the benefits of not installing a firewall, typed in a relaxed non fretting manner.


  Forum Editor 15:28 06 Dec 2003

I thank you for your relaxed, unfretting input. Firewalls rule anyway - most home users (and all corporate networks) are running them.

Don't you go hacking now, we need you here.

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