Monday, October 09, 2006

Are you a Spider man?

I found an announcement on another list today for Spider, a tool from Cornell University for locating sensitive personal information (SSN, credit card numbers, etc.) on a system.

I'm told that the intended use is to run it against the system after you've acquired an image, which makes sense. Either image the system live, and then run the tool on the rebooted system, or remove the hard drive, image it, replace it, boot it, and then run the tool. I wouldn't recommend it as an initial step in IR, as it will change the MAC times on all of the files, but it is a great idea for IT admins. Many times during an engagement, one of the questions that will be asked is, "Is/was there any sensitive data on the system, and if so, was it accessed/copied?" Well, IT admins can run a tool like this as part of their SOP...after all, if an incident does occur, you're going to be asking that question anyway, right?

Also, through in something like LiveView, particularly if all you have is an image. Boot the image, and run Spider against it. Unfortunately, you're going to have to install .Net on the booted image, but VMWare is great with snapshots.

So, for the Windows version, you need to install the .Net framework first. Note that the documentation for downloading and installing Spider refers to the install file as "spider_nsis.exe", and the Windows version (2.19a) comes as 'setup.exe'. The configuration of the tool is a bit outside the 'norm' don't just launch Spider from the command line with switches.

Interesting capabilities include the ability to add regex's, scanning of ADSs, and logging to the Event Log or to syslog.

A great tool, but I really see it being more of an IT admin's SOP than a response tool, 'though it does have it's uses. Keep in mind that the documentation states that you can have a high incident of false positives, but that's the case even with regex searches in EnCase, and just something you have to deal with for now.

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