Mu Security Analyzer busts vulnerabilities with the greatest of ease
Mu-4000 fuzzer shines with wizard-driven test configuration, intelligent workflow, excellent vulnerability profiling, and auto-generated zero-day exploitsFollow @rogeragrimes
I first came across the Mu Security Analyzer when a coworker on a multicompany government project raved about how the appliance found a zero-day vulnerability in an e-mail inspection device that was protecting a top-secret government agency. It was a rather simple script bug in the other vendor’s product, but it would have allowed uncontrolled code execution. The implication was that our top-secret project could have been compromised by an external hacker running penetration tests against our e-mail services. Initially, the manufacturer of the compromised mail filter refused to believe that a weakness existed in its product. That is, until we sent the exploit, automatically generated by the Mu analyzer, that the vendor's engineers could run to see for themselves.
[See slideshow: Mu-4000 Security Analyzer: A Guided Tour ]
Mu Security’s Mu-4000 is a 2U appliance with RAID-configured drives and redundant power supplies that scans other computer devices using known vulnerabilities and malformed (fuzzed) traffic. The goal is to locate both security vulnerabilities and performance problems in the network. The Mu-4000 is constantly updated with the latest published vulnerabilities, but these types of exploits are not the Mu-4000’s strong point. Published Vulnerability Attacks (or PVAs, as Mu Security calls them) only go back a maximum of three years and comprise slightly more than 1,000 exploits.
The Mu’s ability to intelligently fuzz traffic is its strongest selling point. Unlike vulnerability scanners or penetration tools that check only for known vulnerabilities, fuzzing can uncover previously unknown vulnerabilities by hitting network devices with mutations of normal packets and commands. The Mu-4000 understands more than 50 different protocols (IPv4, IPv6, VoIP, SIP, CIFS, ICMP, and SSH, among others) and can generate malformed traffic in millions of ways. The Mu-4000 includes the capability to automatically restart hung hosts and capture packet traces (in pcap form) of both sent and received traffic. The Mu can also capture what is going on in the target device’s network interface or management port, and fire off scripts or kick-start other monitoring devices when a particular event happens.
I ran the Mu-4000 with its 3.0 release code in a test lab against several popular security appliances and a variety of different computer platforms. The Mu-4000 configures like most any security appliance. You plug a computer into its front console port, connect to the Mu’s SSL management port, and configure basic IP information. After that, you can connect using an Internet browser, configure the rest of the device, and start your testing.
The Mu-4000 runs on a modified version of CentOS (essentially Red Hat Linux), modified so that its IP stack will not choke on all the malformed traffic it will be sending. When the device is first started, you must install a license file that specifies which protocols may be attacked. Access to the Mu-4000 can be divided between system admins, who have complete control of the device, and regular users, who can see only results from scans that they create and run. The Mu-4000 has four IP interfaces that can be used in target analysis, and the device can create the attacks or be used as a pass-through device to record information you're gathering with another tool.