Judging by its light name, "spoofing" may seem harmless at first glance. However, it is one of the most serious types of cyber attacks, accounting for millions of dollars in losses each year. Since spoofing attacks can be difficult to detect, they can allow attackers to hide in networks for months, giving them plenty of time to steal important data, injecting malicious software, and more.
A serious counterfeit attack can confuse any business Especially small businesses that have less financial buffer to fall back on. As a result, it is essential that all organizations get acquainted with spoofing attacks, and place greater emphasis on understanding and preventing them.
Here's a guide to basic spoofing attacks and what you can do to prevent them from destroying your business. 1
Before the advent of cyber attacks, the word "spoofing" was used only to describe a comic imitation. Online fake attacks got their name because they also involve imitation, but there is nothing funny about them. In fact, despite getting less pressure than ransomware and other types of cyber attack, they can be just as harmful – if not more.
Simply put, spoofing is a practice of mimicking a party or entity to trick another party or entity into malicious or fraudulent purposes. This definition may sound unclear, but that is because spoofing can take many forms, each with its own details.
Some of the most common types of spoofing attacks are as follows.
Types of spoofing attacks
1. IP address spoofing
IP address spoofing is one of the most common forms of a spoofing attack.
The transmission of IP packets forms the basis of the most communication between network connected devices today. In addition to the body content, each IP packet contains a header containing a source address. This source address usually belongs to the sender of the package. However, during an IP spoofing attack, IP packets create and send with a forged source address.
In addition to being one of the most widespread spoofing attacks, IP spoofing is also one of the most varied. In most cases, IP spoofing is used to launch a Direct Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, flood traffic network by hiding malicious IP packets as legitimate address packets. There are two main IP spoofing methods used in these attacks:
- The masked botnet method: In this method, attackers use botnet devices to infiltrate and flood servers, send multiple packets of counterfeit addresses to hide the entity's identity . This allows attackers to perform successful DDoS attacks without being detected by the target, law enforcement and even many DDoS limiting tools.
- The Reflected Attack Method: In this method, the attacker attacks the target's IP address and uses it to generate and send false packet requests to other network devices. This triggers an automatic response and sends a flood of response packets back to the target. This method is used in a variety of DDoS types, including NTP amplification, DNS amplification, and Smurf attacks.
On top of these attack methods, IP spoofing can also be used to bypass authentication on trust-based networks. These networks only require an IP address to verify the identity of a device trying to access the network. Spoofing one of these IP addresses gives the attackers an easy way around network security measures and provides immediate access rights.
2. ARP Spoofing Attack
ARP spoofing is another commonly used attack that can have very serious consequences for organizations, especially with regard to data theft.
Used in data transfer, ARP (which stands for Address Resolution Protocol) is a protocol that connects IP addresses to Media Access Control (MAC) addresses. During an ARP spoofing attack, the attacker sends a spoofed ARP transmission across the network, thereby connecting the MAC address to a legitimate IP address on the network. Once the attack has been performed, the malicious party can receive, block and modify the data intended for the host IP address.
One of the most common purposes of an ARP attack is to steal sensitive information from the target. However, it is not the only use. ARP spoofing can also be used as part of a DoS attack, and solves the target's multi-IP address MAC address to flood the target of traffic. Session hijacking (accessing a system by stealing its session ID) and man-in-the-middle attacks (used to cancel traffic between targets) can also be performed using ARP spoofing.
When it comes to preventing ARP spoofing attacks, it is important to note that they can only be performed on networks using the address resolution protocol.
3. DNS Server Spoofing Attack
DNS spoofing is another way attackers exploit system vulnerabilities by forging network identities. To put the power of DNS spoofing in perspective, the vulnerability it exploits was also responsible for the Great Firewall of China, which spreads to the United States in 2010, and blocks American citizens from accessing popular sites such as Twitter, Facebook and more.
One of the core systems on the internet, the domain name system (more commonly known as DNS) link domains addresses with associated IP addresses, so that devices can load internet resources efficiently. Unfortunately, like many other important systems, it can be exploited by spoofers.
In a DNS spoofing attack, the attacker manipulates a DNS server to redirect a domain name to an IP address they control. This is used as a basis for allowing attackers to steal sensitive data, spread malware and more. In some cases, the Web site on the attacker's IP address mimics the target site accurately, making DNS attacks very difficult to spot. As with any of the above types of spoofing attacks, DNS spoofing can be performed for a variety of purposes using multiple methods.
One of the most well-known forms of DNS spoofing is DNS cache poisoning. DNS servers maintain speed and efficiency with caching between other servers, but this leaves them open to attack; When attackers inject spoofed DNS records into the server, all nodes that connect to it will use this entry until the cache expires. Worse, DNS poisoning can be quickly and easily spread if other servers (such as home router servers) extract their information from the compromised target server. DNS spoofing can also be used as part of a man-in-center attack, among other things.
How to prevent spoofing attacks?
When you understand how spoofing attacks are commonly used to harm organizations, better understand how to prevent them. One important thing to note is that in most cases there is no way to stop a malicious party from starting a spoofing attack. As such, the best way to prevent spoofing is by adding multiple layers of security to your network so that attacks cannot get through. Here are some of the security methods you can use.
Use Package Filtering
One of the best versatile ways to prevent counterfeiting attacks is to use packet filtering. Ingress packet filtering is a firewall technique that monitors all incoming packets, captures and blocks all those who show conflict between the source of origin and their source address. There is also another form of filtering output packet filtering – which does the same for outbound packets, so attackers cannot start network attacks. Packet filtering is most often used as a preventive tool against IP spoofing, but it is also a useful tool against ARP spoofing, monitoring conflicts between MAC and IP addresses.
Use encrypted protocols
Another highly effective prevention method uses secure, cryptographic network protocols such as HTTPS (HTTP secure), SSH (Secure Shell), and TLS (Transport Layer Security). These protocols encrypt outgoing data and authenticate incoming data and prevent attackers from capturing and modifying the data even if they have performed a spoofing attack.
Do not use trust relationship
As mentioned above, IP spoofing can be used to illegally access any network using trust relationships as an authentication method. This can have catastrophic consequences for any organization. It is not surprising that the best way to prevent this spoofing method is to avoid using trust on your network. Logins is a far safer method for verifying devices.
Using Spoofing Detection Software
Like how anti-virus software is one of the best ways to block malware, anti-spoofing software can be a useful tool in your arsenal. against blocking spoofing attacks. Soft software inspects and verifies all data transfers, and helps capture and block any submissions it believes are spoofed. While the spoofing detection software should not be alleviated as your only spoofing preventive, it is a good way to enhance security.
Get a VPN
Last, but not least, a VPN is a good all-round security tool that organizations should make use of. A VPN (card for Virtual Private Network) encrypts all traffic transfers from a device. This ensures that even if you are a victim of a spoofing attack, the attacker will not be able to capture or modify any of your data. One possible security VPN to try is NordVPN; But there are many good VPNs, you just need to choose carefully.
Finally, the best way to reduce the risk of falling victim to a spoofing attack is to enhance security in as many ways as possible. All of the above suggestions will help protect you, but no choice represents a complete solution. By using all sorts of preventive techniques, you ensure that you are protected from as many angles as possible, which is important for a type of attack with so many variations.