Spoofing

Intermediate
March 29, 2023
Read time:
5m

Spoofing is a technique that involves fabricating information, such as an IP or e-mail address, phone number, and login details, to gain unauthorized access to specific data. Spoofing can be utilized in various attacks, including phishing and Denial of Service (DoS).


Types of spoofing

ARP Spoofing

In this type of spoofing, an attacker mimics a valid Media Access Control (MAC) address, which is a unique identification number assigned by manufacturers to each network device (e.g., a network card). By doing so, the attacker can control the network or execute a man-in-the-middle attack to steal and modify transmitted data.


Caller ID Spoofing

Relies on altering the number displayed on the screen. This allows an organization or other individual to be impersonated in order to acquire possession of precise data.


DNS Spoofing

An attacker can modify DNS server responses to redirect users to malicious websites to steal sensitive information.


E-mail spoofing

Including altering the sender's e-mail address to impersonate a trusted authority, such as a bank. Spammers frequently use this method to hide the source of an e-mail. The user becomes a victim of the attack by accessing a malicious link or attachment.


IP Spoofing

Relies on modifying the original IP address to conceal or alter the attacker's identity. IP spoofing leads to DoS or remote systems attacks.


How can you avoid spoofing?

Thankfully, there are several straightforward ways to safeguard against spoofing. Using robust and complex passwords, along with antivirus software installed on your devices, is recommended. Applications such as Yubikey or VPNs also prove to be very effective particularly if accessing public, unsecured Wi-Fi networks.


Additionally, avoid sharing sensitive information, such as passwords or credit card details, with anyone. It is also advisable to use two-factor authentication for your accounts and refrain from using public Wi-Fi networks, as they are less secure and more susceptible to attacks.


Spoofing and phishing

Phishing involves sending e-mails that resemble official messages from a trusted source, urging recipients to visit a specific website or provide particular information. Once the user clicks the link, they are redirected to a spoofed website and prompted to enter sensitive data like credit card numbers, banking PIN codes, etc.


Spoofing and Denial of Service

DoS attacks are characterized by using spoofed IP addresses to flood computer servers, causing the targeted website or network to slow down or crash while concealing the attacker's identity.


DoS is a modified version of IP spoofing, where the attacker doesn’t need any response from their target. Technically speaking, the targeted host receives a TCP SYN and returns an SYN-ACK.


Summary

Spoofing is a technique that involves falsifying information, such as IP or e-mail addresses, phone numbers, or login details, to deceive a system or user and gain unauthorized access.


Spoofing can be employed in various attacks, including phishing, DDoS, or man-in-the-middle. However, there are methods to defend against spoofing, such as verifying IP and e-mail addresses as well as using strong passwords combined with secure Wi-Fi networks.

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