In today’s business environment data breaches have become rampant, making it mandate to secure the network. No one knows from where these attacks come, system can be attacked anytime by the threats coming from all sides. Making it difficult to ensure that every vector and point of entry is protected.
Lately, a sudden increase in backdoor attacks has been noticed. Here, in this article we’ll know what is backdoor attack, how dangerous it is and how to stay protected against such attack.
What is a Backdoor?
Backdoor is a type of malware that denies accessing system in usual manner. Thus, allowing hackers to remotely access database, file servers, issue system commands and update malware. It gives hackers the leverage to access the compromised network and break into the organization without being identified.
Backdoors are installed by taking advantage of weaknesses found in web application components. Once it is installed on the machine it cannot be identified easily. Commonly it is used in the point of entry or command-and-control [C&C] stage.
Also Read: How to Avoid Data Breach
Common activities performed by a Backdoor
- Data Theft
- Website Hacking
- Compromising Server
- DDoS Attacks
Apart from these backdoor attacks use different strategies to grant access to the hackers like disguised point of entry. Here, we explain certain strategies used by backdoor.
1 Port binding: A technique often used before firewall became common, it involves information of exact configuration that tells where and how messages are sent and received within the network.
2 Connect-back: As firewall became common, hackers had to use different ways to access the system. So, they used connect-back approach to connect compromised machines with cybercriminals C&C server systems. Thus, allowing reverse connection from the servers to vulnerable machine via ports that weren’t protected by firewall.
Also Read: All You Need To Know About: Scareware
3 Usage of malware sample: For this technique, they used various malware samples to not only damage the system but to breach the network by staying undetected for longer durations, giving them enough time to steal data. The first malware downloads the sample and second one steals the data.
4 Platform exploitations: Manipulating legitimate platforms has become a common practice as hackers are having difficulty in side lining the security systems. With the use of this strategy, attackers can easily exploit a valid platform and use it to store C&C server data like a blog.
These are just few examples of how backdoors are carried, there are other way in it work so we need to be very cautious.
Software alone is responsible for carrying backdoor even the hardware components can be used to carry malicious backdoor. Hardware components include authentication tokens, network appliances, surveillance systems and other communication infrastructure devices that can be exploited to allow attackers intrusion.
Protection against backdoor attacks
Detecting backdoor malware is not easy as it runs without showing much signs of its existence. Even many detection tools fail to detect it and protect the system. Thus, we need to learn ways that can help in reducing the risk of a breach.
- The first line of defense one should adopt is to have a firewall running on the system. It blocks entry point unauthorized access meaning execution of port binding backdoor will be nearly impossible.
- Have a strong network monitoring especially for open source based programs and check that they come from reputable sources.
- Add additional layer of security to network monitoring as it is the key to protect against backdoor attacks. Network monitoring guarantees that any suspicious activity won’t take place unnoticed. If command and control server is gathering information the network administrator will get to know and they can take measure to stop the attack and moderate any damage.
- Use an anti-malware program, as some backdoor attacks manipulate with the network traffic to make it look genuine and don’t hit the alarms. So, to avoid such situations an update anti-malware is a must. As, it can quickly and easily detect such backdoors. You can use Systweak Anti-Malware for this purpose as it has all the essential features and it even performs thorough scanning and cleaning to identify and delete these nasty threats.
Backdoor attacks are not only threats for organizations but they are dangerous for individual machines. As they use compromised machines to make their bot army and carry on DDoS attack. But with knowledge about how they attack and how to stay protected we can tackle them.