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Blogs | RESEARCH | August 7, 2018

Are You Trading Stocks Securely? Exposing Security Flaws in Trading Technologies

This blog post contains a small portion of the entire analysis. Please refer to the white paper. Disclaimer Most of the testing was performed using paper money (demo accounts) provided online by the brokerage houses. Only a few accounts were funded with real money for testing purposes. In the case of commercial platforms, the free trials provided by the brokers were used. Only end-user applications and their direct servers were analyzed. Other backend protocols and related technologies used in exchanges and financial institutions were not tested. This…

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | RESEARCH | September 26, 2017

Are You Trading Securely? Insights into the (In)Security of Mobile Trading Apps

The days of open shouting on the trading floors of the NYSE, NASDAQ, and other stock exchanges around the globe are gone. With the advent of electronic trading platforms and networks, the exchange of financial securities now is easier and faster than ever; but this comes with inherent risks.     From the beginning, bad actors have also joined Wall Street’s party, developing clever models for fraudulent gains. Their efforts have included everything from fictitious brokerage firms that ended up being Ponzi schemes[1] to…

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | RESEARCH | February 3, 2016

Brain Waves Technologies: Security in Mind? I Don’t Think So

INTRODUCTION Just a decade ago, electroencephalography (EEG) was limited to the inner rooms of hospitals, purely for medical purposes. Nowadays, relatively cheap consumer devices capable of measuring brain wave activity are in the hands of curious kids, researchers, artists, creators, and hackers. A few of the applications of this technology include: ·       EEG-controlled Exoskeleton Hope for ALS Sufferers ·       Brain-controlled Drone ·       Brain Waves Used as a Biometric Authentication Mechanism ·       Translating Soldier Thoughts to Computer Commands (Military) ·       Detect Battlefield Threats via Brain Waves

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | EDITORIAL | October 16, 2015

Five Reasons Why You Should Go To BruCON

BruCON is one of the most important security conferences in Europe. Held each October, the ‘Bru’ in ‘BruCON’ refers to Brussels, the capital of Belgium, where it all started. Nowadays, it’s held in the beautiful city of Ghent, just 55 mins from its origin. I had the chance to attend this year, and here are the five things that make it a great conference, in my opinion. You can check out BruCON’s promo video here: 1. The conference Great talks presented by international speakers; from deeply…

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | INSIGHTS | September 8, 2015

The Beauty of Old-school Backdoors

Currently, voodoo advanced rootkit techniques exist for persistence after you’ve got a shell during a pen test. Moreover, there are some bugdoorsimplemented on purpose by vendors, but that’s a different story. Beautiful techniques and code are available these days, but, do you remember that subtle code you used to use to sneak through the door? Enjoy that nostalgia by sharing your favorite one(s) using the #oldschoolbackdoors on social networks.   In this post, I present five Remote Administration Tools (RATs) a.k.a. backdoors that I personally used and admired. It’s important…

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | INSIGHTS | November 6, 2014

ELF Parsing Bugs by Example with Melkor Fuzzer

Too often the development community continues to blindly trust the metadata in Executable and Linking Format (ELF) files. In this paper, Alejandro Hernández walks you through the testing process for seven applications and reveals the bugs that he found. He performed the tests using Melkor, a file format fuzzer he wrote specifically for ELF files.   Introduction The ELF file format, like any other file format, is an array of bits and bytes interconnected through data structures. When interpreted by an ELF parser, an ELF file makes sense, depending upon…

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | INSIGHTS | May 7, 2014

Glass Reflections in Pictures + OSINT = More Accurate Location

By Alejandro Hernández – @nitr0usmx Disclaimer: The aim of this article is to help people to be more careful when taking pictures through windows because they might reveal their location inadvertently. The technique presented here might be used for many different purposes, such as to track down the location of the bad guys, to simply know in which hotel is that nice room or by some people, to follow the tracks of their favorite artist. All of the pictures presented here were posted by the owners on…

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | INSIGHTS | November 27, 2013

A Short Tale About executable_stack in elf_read_implies_exec() in the Linux Kernel

This is a short and basic analysis I did when I was uncertain about code execution in the data memory segment. Later on, I describe what’s happening in the kernel side as well as what seems to be a small logic bug. I’m not a kernel hacker/developer/ninja; I’m just a Linux user trying to figure out the reason of this behavior by looking in key places such as the ELF loader and other related functions. So, if you see any mistakes or you realize that I approached this in a…

Alejandro Hernandez
Blogs | INSIGHTS | April 16, 2013

Can GDB’s List Source Code Be Used for Evil Purposes?

One day while debugging an ELF executable with the GNU Debugger (GDB), I asked myself, “How does GDB know which file to read when you use the list command?” (For the uninformed, the list command prints a specified number of lines from a source code file -— ten lines is the default.)   Source code filenames are contained in the metadata of an ELF executable (in the .debug_line section, to be exact). When you use the list command, GDB will open(), read(), and display the file contents if and only…

Alejandro Hernandez

Thoughts on Supply Chain Integrity

In this video presentation, John Sheehy, VP, Sales and Strategy at IOActive, shares his comprehensive view on the myriad considerations facing business as they undertake supply chain integrity assessments, focused on securing operations.

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