|laziness, impatience, and hubris
RE (tilly) 2: Warning our Fellow Monksby tilly (Archbishop)
|on Oct 11, 2000 at 01:08 UTC
You are not protected. That parameter is a standard thing to try, along with various variations of it. You may need to vary the number of ..'s, you may need to fool an RE or two, but there are a finite number of combinations to use, and eventually you will hit one.
You see there are a limited number of basic attacks the attacker will be trying to get to happen. There are a collection of ways to fool standard code with standard mistakes into falling for something interesting. And your code has a set of input parameters. So the script kiddie is going to list your parameters, and then plug a series of inputs in, until something interesting happens, and this attack will be on the list of obvious things to try.
Were your code written in C an attacker could similarly pass longer and longer parameters until they got evidence something crashed. Once it crashes then you play around figuring out at what length it crashes. Once you know that then you start putting interesting exploits at that position. Again, it takes virtually no knowledge of the specifics of the code to figure out how to abuse it. Perl is virtually immune to buffer overflows, but they make up the most commonly reported security errors.
And that is the key. Identify an easy to make mistake, start trying it out in random places. Eventually you find a way in. The key is not to analyze any one target in depth and break in there, rather it is to rattle a lot of doors until one falls apart. And once you break one door, probably lots more have the same flaw...
Another fun one is default passwords. For instance Microsoft's SQL Server had a default login for the longest time. It has been fixed for a year now, but plenty of sites still have the login. So go, try that key on enough sites, and eventually you will get a database of credit cards.
It is as easy as that!