The images below show the password cracking results for the above passwords. As you can see from the above results, we managed to crack the softwares crack sites and second passwords that had lower softwares crack sites numbers. It had a higher strength number. Password cracking techniques There are a number of techniques that can be used to crack passwords. We will describe the most commonly used ones below; Dictionary attack— This method involves the use of a wordlist to compare against user passwords.
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The images below show the password cracking results for the above passwords. As you can see from the above results, we managed to crack the first and second passwords that had lower strength numbers.
It had a higher strength number. Password cracking techniques There are a number of techniques that can be used to crack passwords. We will describe the most commonly used ones below; Dictionary attack— This method involves the use of a wordlist to compare against user passwords.
Brute force attack— This method is similar to the dictionary attack. Brute force attacks use algorithms that combine alpha-numeric characters and symbols to come up with passwords for the attack. Rainbow table attack— This method uses pre-computed hashes. We can create another database that has md5 hashes of commonly used passwords. We can then compare the password hash we have against the stored hashes in the database.
If a match is found, then we have the password. Guess— As the name suggests, this method involves guessing. Passwords such as qwerty, password, admin, etc. If they have not been changed or if the user is careless when selecting passwords, then they can be easily compromised. Spidering— Most organizations use passwords that contain company information. This information can be found on company websites, social media such as facebook, twitter, etc.
Spidering gathers information from these sources to come up with word lists. The word list is then used to perform dictionary and brute force attacks.
We already looked at a similar tool in the above example on password strengths. The website www. We will now look at some of the commonly used tools John the Ripper John the Ripper uses the command prompt to crack passwords.
This makes it suitable for advanced users who are comfortable working with commands. It uses to wordlist to crack passwords. The program is free, but the word list has to be bought. It has free alternative word lists that you can use. Visit the product website http: It is used to recover passwords for user accounts, recovery of Microsoft Access passwords; networking sniffing, etc.
It is very common among newbies and script kiddies because of its simplicity of use. Ophcrack Ophcrack is a cross-platform Windows password cracker that uses rainbow tables to crack passwords. It also has a module for brute force attacks among other features. Password Cracking Counter Measures An organization can use the following methods to reduce the chances of the passwords been cracked Avoid short and easily predicable passwords Avoid using passwords with predictable patterns such as Passwords stored in the database must always be encrypted.
For md5 encryptions, its better to salt the password hashes before storing them. Salting involves adding some word to the provided password before creating the hash. Most registration systems have password strength indicators, organizations must adopt policies that favor high password strength numbers.
Hacking Activity: Hack Now! In this practical scenario, we are going to crack Windows account with a simple password. Windows uses NTLM hashes to encrypt passwords. Cain and Abel cracker can be used to crack passwords using; Dictionary attack Brute force Cryptanalysis We will use the dictionary attack in this example. You will need to download the dictionary attack wordlist here 10k-Most-Common. Password cracking steps Open Cain and Abel, you will get the following main screen Make sure the cracker tab is selected as shown above Click on the Add button on the toolbar.
The following dialog window will appear The local user accounts will be displayed as follows. Note the results shown will be of the user accounts on your local machine. Right click on the account you want to crack. For this tutorial, we will use Accounts as the user account. The following screen will appear Right click on the dictionary section and select Add to list menu as shown above Browse to the 10k most common.
If the password is not cracked using a dictionary attack, you can try brute force or cryptanalysis attacks. Summary Password cracking is the art of recovering stored or transmitted passwords. Password strength is determined by the length, complexity, and unpredictability of a password value.
Common password techniques include dictionary attacks, brute force, rainbow tables, spidering and cracking. Password cracking tools simplify the process of cracking passwords.
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