Marketing

A Hacker, I am

Credit: ID 76705033 © Hagen411 | Dreamstime.com

This had been a long gig, with many long nights just crawling through logs, or reconnaissance data but as I sipped from my cold cup of coffee, it clicked. I had access. Finally, all my effort paid off. I spent what seemed to be endless days trying to worm my way into my targets systems. There were days I wanted to just bang my head on the table from the frustration of it, I needed to get in, and failure was not an option.

I started by foot-printing my target so that I knew as much as I could about them. I even set up social media accounts and scrapped all the information I could to generate a list of accounts and passwords that might get me on to their network. I needed to know everything about anyone who worked for the company, how many children or pets they had, their names and ages. What they like to do, what they like, even what they eat.  

With my new-found knowledge I poked and prodded the organisation’s protections trying to find my way in, that crack in the armour that would be their downfall, but I couldn’t find any. I had to be careful not to do something that would alert them of my approach, soft touches so the firewall or IDS wouldn’t see me as a threat and alert the IT team that the defences were being tested. If they caught me it was all over.

Every touch I made left a trace. Yes, I cloaked my systems with several layers of anonymisation, but one mistake could be enough to get me caught. I was getting closer, I could feel it. Just another couple of hours and I would have the access I needed to own my targets systems. They would be mine.

In the end, it was social engineering that got me access. I had sent phishing emails to all the staff to try and get one of them to click on my link and allow me onto their system. I had to refine my efforts and sent four different versions to different targets, Specific employees who I thought would be my way in for one reason or another, sometimes just a hunch on someone that I get from their social is enough to put a target on their back.