02 May 2016

GrrCon 2015 - Memory Forensics - Grabbing all the Flags...

Today we bring you a special guest posting by Tony "@captcook32" Cook. Late last year GrrCon hosted their anticipatory excellent set of challenges which included an in depth memory forensics challenge by Wyatt Roersma. Tony and myself took a few days on a down week to try our hand at the challenge. I lacked the answers to two questions while Tony knocked them all out quickly.

While the scoreboard was reset to before our scores were posted, I'd like to present Tony's write-up on the challenge. The challenge files are still available for download, so feel free to try the challenge on your own and return for hints. Next to each question is the file required to answer it and the password needed to open the archive.

And so follows Tony Cook:

In October 2015 Google put on the GrrCon 2015 CTF challenge which was open to all who wanted to attempt the challenge. My colleague "The Brian Baskin" @bbaskin let me know it was going on & I wanted to test out my memory forensics skills so I gave it a shot. This was one of the most fun & valuable CTFs that I've ever done. I want to give a huge shout out the the Volatility team for their awesome product & for the GrrCon 2015 CTF team for having a semi real world challenge that made you think outside of the box. The following blog post is my walkthrough of how I got through the challenge. There are most likely far better ways to go about doing most of these & I don't claim to be a memory forensic expert but I hope this helps out anyone who got stuck on any of the questions &/or anyone looking for an explanation. 

Question #1

We start out with a question letting us know that user opened a "strange" email that appeared to be a security update, kudos to the CTF creators because who hasn't seen that happen... All we need to provide is the sender's email address. As with all of these questions there are about a million different approaches that we could take to find the answer, however, the way my lazy mind works I wanted to start by finding all the email addresses within the memory dump, then use that list to grep through the memory dump for these email addresses to hope for an email that would resemble the user's . So to start with I utilized Garfunkel amazing tool, the Bulk Extractor. Among several other options this tool can provide you with a histogram of email addresses which will provide us a starting point to start looking through the memory dump.