An adversary sends a UDP datagram to the remote host to determine if the host is alive. If a UDP datagram is sent to an open UDP port there is very often no response, so a typical strategy for using a UDP ping is to send the datagram to a random high port on the target. The goal is to solicit an 'ICMP port unreachable' message from the target, indicating that the host is alive. UDP pings are useful because some firewalls are not configured to block UDP datagrams sent to strange or typically unused ports, like ports in the 65K range. Additionally, while some firewalls may filter incoming ICMP, weaknesses in firewall rule-sets may allow certain types of ICMP (host unreachable, port unreachable) which are useful for UDP ping attempts.
The table(s) below shows the other attack patterns and high level categories that are related to this attack pattern. These relationships are defined as ChildOf, ParentOf, MemberOf and give insight to similar items that may exist at higher and lower levels of abstraction. In addition, relationships such as CanFollow, PeerOf, and CanAlsoBe are defined to show similar attack patterns that the user may want to explore.
Relevant to the view "Mechanisms of Attack" (CAPEC-1000)
Standard Attack Pattern - A standard level attack pattern in CAPEC is focused on a specific methodology or technique used in an attack. It is often seen as a singular piece of a fully executed attack. A standard attack pattern is meant to provide sufficient details to understand the specific technique and how it attempts to accomplish a desired goal. A standard level attack pattern is a specific type of a more abstract meta level attack pattern.
The adversary requires the ability to send a UDP datagram to a remote host and receive a response.
The adversary requires the ability to craft custom UDP Packets for use during network reconnaissance.
The target's firewall must not be configured to block egress ICMP messages.
UDP pings can be performed via the use of a port scanner or by raw socket manipulation using a scripting or programming language. Packet injection tools are also useful for this purpose. Depending upon the technique used it may also be necessary to sniff the network in order to see the response.
The table below specifies different individual consequences associated with the attack pattern. The Scope identifies the security property that is violated, while the Impact describes the negative technical impact that arises if an adversary succeeds in their attack. The Likelihood provides information about how likely the specific consequence is expected to be seen relative to the other consequences in the list. For example, there may be high likelihood that a pattern will be used to achieve a certain impact, but a low likelihood that it will be exploited to achieve a different impact.
Bypass Protection Mechanism
Configure your firewall to block egress ICMP messages.
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Page Last Updated or Reviewed:
July 31, 2018
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