Phishing is a form of cyber attack which typically relies on email or other electronic communication methods such as text messages and phone calls. It is one of the most popular techniques of social engineering. Where hackers pose as a trustworthy organisation or entity and trick users into revealing sensitive and confidential information.
We will create a facebook phishing page using Social Engineering Toolkit which is a preinstalled functionality in Kali Linux OS. The phishing link can be sent to any user on the same Local Area Network as you and the data that they enter on the fraudulent page will be stored in a file on the attacker’s machine.
Social Engineering Toolkit or SET for short is the standard for social engineering testing among security professionals and even beginners must have a basic idea about using the tool. Basically, it implements a computer-based social engineering attack.
Steps of Phishing Attack:
- Open the terminal window in Kali and make sure you have root access as ‘setoolkit’ needs you to have root access
- Type ‘setoolkit’ in the command line
You will be warned that this tool is to be used only with company authorisation or for educational purposes only and that the terms of service will be violated if you use it for malicious purposes.
- Type y to agree to the conditions and use the tool
- A menu shows up next. Enter 1 as the choice as in this demo we attempt to demonstrate a social engineering attack.
Under Social Engineering, there are various computer-based attacks and SET explains each in one line before asking for a choice.
- Enter 3 which will select the ‘Credential Harvester Attack Method’ as the aim is to obtain user credentials by creating a bogus page which will have certain form fields.
Now, the attacker has a choice to either craft a malicious web page on their own or to just clone an existing trustworthy site.
- Enter 2 in order to select ‘Site Cloner’
This might take a moment as SET creates the cloned page.
- Now you need to see IP address of the attacker machine. Open a new terminal window and write ifconfig
- Copy the IP address stated in ‘inet’ field
- SET will ask you to provide an IP where the credentials captured will be stored. Paste the address that you copied in the earlier step.
- Since we chose to clone a website instead of a personalised one, URL to be cloned is to be provided. In this example, it is www.facebook.com
- Social Engineering Toolkit needs Apache Server running as captured data is written to the root directory of Apache. Enter y when prompted about starting the Apache process.
The set up for a phishing attack is complete, you have cloned Facebook and hosted it on the server. SET informs us the directory at which the captured data will be stored.
The IP address is usually hidden carefully by using URL shortener services to change the URL so that it is better hidden and then sent in urgent sounding emails or text messages.
- Go to browser and type http://yourIP (eg: http://192.168.0.108) Note: I am writing this article from Maharashtra,India hence Facebook is in the native language Marathi.
If an unsuspecting user fills in their details and clicks on ‘Log In’, the fake page takes them to the actual Facebook login page. Usually, people tend to pass it off as a glitch in FB or error in their typing.
- Finally, reap the benefits. Go to /var/www/html and you can see the harvester file created there.
Hope this guide gave you a basic idea of how phishing attacks work.
Phishing is constantly evolving to entrap innocent computer users. Recommended safety tips will be to always check the URL of a website in the browser and use of two-factor authentication as it provides an extra security layer to your account.