Back in the heady days of 1999, when the first edition of Hacking Exposed was released, everyone was pouring into the latest dot-com and preparing for their inevitable IPO. Times were good, and new technologies were being developed at a torrid pace. Well, as we all know, those days of starting a dot-com and taking a private company public in 12 months are long gone. Not only has the financial market changed dramatically, but so has the security landscape. If you don't know that security is now a necessity, not a luxury, you have either been living in a cave for the past five years or are lost remembering the fond old days when your dot-com stock was worth something.

From the beginning, when we first created the concept for Hacking Exposed, our goal has always been to educate and enlighten. Some may say, "educate and enlighten the bad guys," but we disagree . The bad guys (and gals) already know what we are presenting. In fact, the good news is that many of you know or will soon know the techniques and concepts that many attackers rely on to do their dirty work. We always say that security isn't necessarily difficult, it just requires a bit of education and a lot of vigilance.

So in Hacking Exposed, Fifth Edition, the operative word is vigilance. Whether you are a home user or part of the security team of a Global 100 company, you must be vigilant. Do not bow to the pressures of apathy. Keep a watchful eye on security and you will be rewarded personally and professionally. Don't become yet another victim of a drive-by shooting on the information superhighway.


We continue to update Hacking Exposed because new technologies are being developed continually that introduce new security exposures. In essence, the security world and its associated challenges parallel the rate of technology change. That is, as the complexity of technology increases at an exponential rate, so do the security challenges. This is both good news and bad news, depending on what side of the fence you sit on. In addition, new techniques, tools, and attack vectors used to circumvent existing security technologies are being developed at a mind-numbing rate. You could say it is the proverbial cat and mouse game; however, the stakes are very real. In this edition, we have worked tirelessly to update this venerable tome to cover the latest technologies and provide you with the latest techniques.


Among the new items exposed in the fifth edition:

  • Up-to-date techniques and countermeasures for preventing the exploitation of UNIX systems

  • New chapter on hacking code, covering the ways flaws get introduced into software and how best to prevent their ubiquitous spread

  • New Windows hacks including RPCSS (Blaster), LSASS (Sasser), and PCT (Download.ject) buffer overflow exploits

  • Updated denial of service chapter with from-the-trenches descriptions of largescale zombie attacks and practical countermeasures

  • Coverage of new web hacking tools and techniques, including HTTP response splitting and automated vulnerability scanners

  • Totally revised chapter on hacking Internet users, covering the newest IE exploits, online services security, sociotechnical attacks like phishing, and the newest malware techniques including Windows rootkits techniques

  • Coverage of new wireless hacks

  • New content on remote connectivity including VoIP hacking

  • New coverage of web and e-mail client hacking, including the latest Internet Explorer exploits, phishing, spyware, rootkits, and bots

  • New hacks using Google as a reconnaissance tool

  • An updated footprinting chapter that deals with all the inevitable changes in finding information from various internet databases

  • Brand-new case studies covering relevant and timely security attacks including Google, wireless, and Mac OS X hacks