July 9th, 2023
Before launching an attack on a system or network, it's important to gather information about your target. This process is known as reconnaissance or "recon" for short. Reconnaissance helps you understand the target's network topology, identify potential vulnerabilities, and plan your attack strategy.
In this post, we'll cover some basic reconnaissance techniques that you can use to gather information about your target.
Passive reconnaissance involves gathering information about a target without directly interacting with it. This can include searching for information on public websites, social media, and job postings. You can also use tools like WHOIS and DNS lookup to gather information about the target's domain name, IP address, and hosting provider.
Active reconnaissance involves directly interacting with the target to gather information. This can include port scanning, ping sweeps, and vulnerability scanning. Port scanning involves sending packets to a target's ports to determine which ports are open and what services are running on those ports. Ping sweeps involve sending ICMP packets to a range of IP addresses to determine which hosts are online. Vulnerability scanning involves using tools like Nessus or OpenVAS to identify vulnerabilities on a target system.
Social engineering involves tricking people into revealing sensitive information or providing access to a system. This can include phishing emails, pretexting, and physical attacks. For example, a phishing email may be sent to an employee of the target organization, pretending to be from a legitimate source and asking them to click a link or enter their login credentials.
Active Information Gathering
Active information gathering involves using tools like Google dorks or advanced search queries to find information about the target. This can include searching for specific file types, usernames, or passwords.
When conducting reconnaissance, it's important to keep in mind that some techniques may be illegal or unethical. Always obtain permission from the target organization before conducting any type of reconnaissance.
In the next post, we'll cover some basic scanning techniques that you can use to identify potential vulnerabilities in a target system.