code, programming, hacking

Chapter – 9 | All about Web Hacking | 2020

How a hackers utilizes web to contain information about their target and how they use methods like phishing, SQL injection and many more to succeed in thier task.

In this blog we will understand all about it.

A photo of Internet. All about web hacking
Internet is where everything lies.

The reality is Internet has made our lives easier, communication is happening at lightning speed and everything from creation to management aspects of life is becoming more digital day by day.

But for all this to happen data is required for maintainance, retreval and constant updation and upgradation.

That means data of every individual and corporation is now available, in the internet.

Data Availability –

To work digitally data has to be provided, with the advent of internet data is stored in multiple workstations and servers to maintain this.

A plethora of data is now available for everyone, whether it is for use of misuse is something that we shall be talking about, nontheless today everything works via a login screen.

It’s now become important that one should take great care of their online data than anything else, cause the type of information that you put out in the world, your details, your opinions and point of views can come into limelight to web hackers who are always there to extract critical information for their agenda.

The Internet banking and Online shopping also has their own issues but we not gonna linger on that here. Maybe later?

What is web hacking?

Simply put web hacking is the ability and usage of the ability to hack a system or website to gather critical information that may be cruicial for the survival of the individual or the corporation.

There are certain methods that web hackers use to succeed here, we will understand those methods.

Something’s Phishy

Something is Phishy
Caught the client in the hook.

Phishing is one of the most common web-based attack that is done by web hackers.

Phishing is a cybercrime.

It happens at the client-side and hence the person solely responsible is the innocent victim himself/herself.

How it is done?

Targets are contacted by email, telephone or text message by someone posing as a legitimate institution to lure individuals into providing sensitive data such as personally identifiable information, banking and credit card details, and passwords.

Simply put phishing is the act of making a web page appear as authentic as possible.

The naive users will interact with a phished website only to mistakenly input their details.

Often common people have zero idea of interacting with such a malicious application.

Ps – In 2004 the first phishing lawsuit was filed against a Californian teenager who created the imitation of the website “America Online”. With this fake website, he was able to gain sensitive information from users and access the credit card details to withdraw money from their accounts.

How we get lured to believe?

Cause a phished website is nothing but an exact replica of the actual website.

Example – Let us assume that your gmail login page has to be phished.

The attacker will initially save the entire html page of Gmail Login Screen.

By easily pressing right click button + Save the page.

Now after finalizing the exact copy of the original the attacker who definitely have its own server, will host this Login Screen page.

He will generate a link to this page and send it to the victim (most commonly using the method, email phishing.), Now making the victim open this phishing page can be a task in itself.

To convince the victim to open, the attacker can use many things that we have discussed till now.

He can send the link via e-mail fabricating it in a way that it looks like Gmail itself has send a message.

Here lies the disguising ability of a hacker to successfully complete his task.

Second Stage – Execution

Since the phished login page looks exactly the same as actual Gmail page, the target is bound to type his credentials and hit “Enter”.

After pressing “Enter” the most important bit of Phishing attack happens.

In the original link, our creds go to Gmail server which are authenticated and hence we get access.

But in the phished website, there won’t be any such connection.

The attacker uses a small script which runs on a Phished Website as soon as the traget presses “Enter”.

The Script

The Scroll
The Scroll.

The task of the script is simple, it will note down the username and password entered and store it on the attacker’s server and then redirect the target to the authentic website.

In this way, the target is presuaded to believe that a simple page refresh pahhened and hence the user have to provide the credidentials again.

The script is a middle party which is there only to note down the information of the user and then redirects the page back to the original link.

The innocent user doesnt even know what happened and the attacker now has the information which he can use in various ways.

Clever guy!

How to prevent such attacks!

The thumb rule is to not open links to pages from unidentified sources.

To protect against spam mails, spam filters can be used. Generally, the filters assess the origin of the message, the software used to send the message, and the appearance of the message to determine if it’s spam.

Occasionally, spam filters may even block emails from legitimate sources, so it isn’t always 100% accurate.

One way to ensure security is to change passwords on a regular basis, and never use the same password for multiple accounts. It’s also a good idea for websites to use a CAPTCHA system for added security.

This steps can be taken to ensure your safety in the internet.

SQL Injection

SQL Injection is a server side attack whereas Phishing was a client side attack.

SQL injection is a code injection technique that might destroy your database.

SQL injection is one of the most common web hacking techniques.

SQL injection is the placement of malicious code in SQL statements, via web page input

What is Server Side Attack?

Server-side attacks (also called service-side attacks) are launched directly from an attacker (the client) to a listening service.

Server-side attacks exploit vulnerabilities in installed services. This is not exclusively a “server” problem (like a file server running the Windows 2012 operating system).

A server side attack is where the sender of information is compromised.

In every case, it is the server.

It can be a database of server or its resources.

Imagnie Netflix being down, it will probably be because of a Server-Side Attack.

In this attack the attacker gains the access to the server’s database.

If adequate rights are available, the attacker can even delete the whole database.

But this attack requires a lot of trial and error before anything valuable comes out of it.

Let us understand this by using a hypothetical example –

Many websites have search buttons where you can manually search for items, products or services.

The attacker can use this as a medium to gain more information in the list with respect to the website.

The attacker can extract information such as –

All products the website holds

Usernames & Passwords

Credit Card Information etc.

How does the attack happen?

An attacker embeds an SQL Query in the search box rather than using it for actual product search.

In order to search the database for the required informaiton, trial and error is required.

First the attacker looks if an SQL Injection is even possible to the website or not.

Secured servers always clean-up the query terms that are entered in the search fields.

But if this isn’t the case, then those services are vulnerable to SQL Injection.

After this the attacker executes the SQL Injection and gains data such as various types of databases, table names, column names.

Only after this, the attacker can extract any valuable information from the server.

We have provided the definitions and the basic concepts here, the practical part of it and the advanced techniques will be uploaded via youtube and our upcoming blogs.

Stay tuned.

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Thank you for reading!

About the author

Sandeep Sarkar

Namaskaram, I am a student learning and sharing my knowledge and experience about the things that I learned from society, textbooks, and my own experiences, If my words can make someone's life better than that's all I was here for. Thank You

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